Conference overview

IR: MOVING THE DIAL - NAVIGATING A FAST EVOLVING INVESTMENT LANDSCAPE

Wednesday 12 June 2024

The IR Society’s Annual Conference for 2024 saw around 350 IR professionals gather at the IET: Savoy Place to discuss the key trends, issues and opportunities facing Investor Relations, as IR practitioners lead the way and continue to shapeshift and adapt against a backdrop of a variety of changes which are impacting key constituents of the investment community, including trends in the UK listing environment, the changing shape of asset management, as well as AI and innovation.

The conference addressed the key challenges and opportunities for IRO’s working across a diverse range of company sizes and sectors, and provided insight and practical takeaways for IR practitioners to consider in their own roles. This flagship event in the IR calendar helps to ensure that IR professionals stay relevant and well equipped to navigate a fast changing operating environment.

This one day event brings the IR community together for a full programme of keynotes, plenary sessions, presentations and breakouts alongside the supplier exhibition and great networking opportunities.

“Thanks for putting on such a fantastic event! It was totally worth battling all the delays to attend! My first live IR conference and a thoroughly informative and enjoyable one. Great to meet so many IROs in person.”

2023 Conference Attendee
Venue: IET: Savoy Place, 2 Savoy Place, London, WC2R 0BL

Videos

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Programme

08:00 – 08:45

Riverside Room

Registration and breakfast

08:45 – 08:50

Kelvin Lecture Theatre

Opening Remarks from the Conference Committee Chair

Rob Gurner Rob Gurner
Head of Investor Relations, Inchcape

Rob joined Inchcape plc, the leading global automotive distributor, as Head of IR in April 2023, have previously been at Plus500, a global fintech group, which he joined in May 2020. Prior to that, Rob spent 3 years as Head of IR at Inmarsat plc, a satellite operator, before which he was Head of Global Investor relations for Tokyo-listed Dentsu Inc, following their acquisition of Aegis plc in 2013, where was Head of IR. Before that, Rob had senior IR roles for Lonmin Plc, a platinum mining business, and G4S plc, a security services company. Before moving into in-house IR, Rob worked for a number of financial communications consultancies, including FTI and Gavin Anderson.

08:50 – 09:00

Kelvin Lecture Theatre

Welcome from the Conference Host

Evan Davis Evan Davis
Journalist and Broadcaster

Evan Davis is the presenter of the Radio 4 daily news and current affairs show PM. He is also the host of Dragons Den and the Radio 4 business discussion programme the Bottom Line. Until November 2018, he presented Newsnight on BBC2. And prior to that he was a presenter of the Today programme on BBC Radio 4. He also spent seven years as the Economics Editor of the BBC. Before joining the BBC in 1993, he was an economist at the Institute for Fiscal Studies and at the London Business School. Evan's latest book is called Post Truth: Why we have reached Peak Bullshit and what we can do about it.

09:00 – 09:30

Kelvin Lecture Theatre

Opening Keynote

Alison Dolan Alison Dolan
CFO, Rightmove

Alison is the Chief Financial Officer at Rightmove plc, a position she has held since September 2020. She brings to the Board extensive commercial and operational finance experience, particularly within digital businesses. Prior to Rightmove, she held a number of senior financial positions at Sky plc between 2002-2016, including Group Treasurer, Director of Finance and was the Deputy Managing Director at Sky Business, after which she moved to News UK to serve as the Chief Strategy Officer at the forefront of the business’s digital transformation from 2016 until May 2020. She is a Non-Executive Director on the Board of Pearson plc. Alison is an Irish national and has a Masters in Business Studies from University College Dublin.

09:30 – 10:15

Kelvin Lecture Theatre

The Future of the UK-listed Environment

This opening plenary session, comprising senior industry participants, will introduce the conference theme, and set the tone for the day’s discussions, addressing some of the key trends, opportunities and challenges facing IR practitioners in this changing investment landscape.

Moderator: Evan Davis Moderator: Evan Davis
Journalist and Broadcaster

Evan Davis is the presenter of the Radio 4 daily news and current affairs show PM. He is also the host of Dragons Den and the Radio 4 business discussion programme the Bottom Line. Until November 2018, he presented Newsnight on BBC2. And prior to that he was a presenter of the Today programme on BBC Radio 4. He also spent seven years as the Economics Editor of the BBC. Before joining the BBC in 1993, he was an economist at the Institute for Fiscal Studies and at the London Business School. Evan's latest book is called Post Truth: Why we have reached Peak Bullshit and what we can do about it.

James Arnold James Arnold
Global Co-Head of Strategic Insights & Advisory - UBS

James read Philosophy & Politics at Hatfield College, Durham University and has worked in a wide variety of equity focused roles across both the buy and sell side of public markets, including being a buy side analyst, portfolio manager and managing equity sales desks. Since joining UBS in 2013 James moved from Head of UK Sales to equity research where he wrote UK and European equity strategy research and wrote extensively on the relevance of management language in market communications. In 2020 he created the Strategic Insights team within Global Banking which produces content orientated towards companies rather than investors. That team was merged with the Corporate Insight team at Credit Suisse and James is now the Global Co Head of Strategic Insights and Advisory. Outside the office he bores his children about the lessons and relevance of military history. To give his children a break he spends as much time as he can playing golf or cricket

Sarah Moody Sarah Moody
Chief Corporate Affairs & Sustainability Officer, abrdn

Sarah leads abrdn’s corporate sustainability, brand, marketing, and communications functions. She has wide-ranging experience in both publicly-listed companies and advisory roles, supporting international businesses on all aspects of investor relations and corporate affairs. She is also the Chair of the abrdn Charitable Foundation and a Non-Executive Director of the abrdn Financial Fairness Trust. Before joining abrdn, Sarah was Co-Founder and CEO of Future 30 Funds, a start-up asset manager focused on sustainable investing. Prior to that, Sarah was Group Director of Corporate Affairs & Investor Relations at Pennon Group plc, where she was part of the Executive team that sold Viridor energy-from-waste and recycling to KKR for £4.2 billion. Sarah was previously an Associate Partner at Finsbury (now FGS Global), the strategic communications advisory firm. Sarah started her career in investment banking at Bank of America Merrill Lynch and latterly at BMO Capital Markets. Sarah has a BA with First Class Honours in European Social & Political Studies from University College London and an MBA from Saïd Business School, University of Oxford.

Charles Hall Charles Hall
Head of Research - Peel Hunt

Charles joined Peel Hunt as Head of Research in October 2008 and has been ranked 1st in the II UK survey over numerous years. His career includes nine years at Panmure Gordon and nine years at Cazenove. Charles read Politics and Economics at Durham University.

Marcus Stuttard Marcus Stuttard
Head of AIM & UK Primary Markets, London Stock Exchange Group

Marcus Stuttard is Head of AIM and has responsibility for Primary Markets in the UK across both AIM and the Main Market. He is responsible for the management and development of AIM, London Stock Exchange’s international growth market for small and medium sized enterprises. Marcus has a particular focus on boosting access to finance for ambitious growth companies. He is a regular speaker on growth and business funding issues and sits on a number of industry and policy advisory bodies including the ScaleUp Institute’s Access to Finance and Growth Capital Committee and the IoD’s Centre for Corporate Governance Advisory Board. He has played a leading role in key capital market developments such as the launch of the High Growth Segment and policy changes such as making AIM shares eligible for inclusion in ISAs and the abolition of stamp duty on the trading of shares admitted to Recognised Growth Markets such as AIM.

10:15 – 10:55

Riverside Room

Morning Break and Exhibitor Showcase

10:55 - 11:40

Kelvin Lecture Theatre

AI – a Potential Game-changer for IR….or Not?

This second plenary session will offer practical advice and guidance to the audience on current trends and opportunities in AI. This panel of IR practitioners will discuss how data and AI is being used by IR teams and their interactions with the buy- and -side-side, and recommendations on how the use of data and AI might be able to help support the IR role.

Moderator: Evan Davis Moderator: Evan Davis
Journalist and Broadcaster

Evan Davis is the presenter of the Radio 4 daily news and current affairs show PM. He is also the host of Dragons Den and the Radio 4 business discussion programme the Bottom Line. Until November 2018, he presented Newsnight on BBC2. And prior to that he was a presenter of the Today programme on BBC Radio 4. He also spent seven years as the Economics Editor of the BBC. Before joining the BBC in 1993, he was an economist at the Institute for Fiscal Studies and at the London Business School. Evan's latest book is called Post Truth: Why we have reached Peak Bullshit and what we can do about it.

Michael Hufton Michael Hufton
Founder and Managing Director, ingage IR LTD

Michael founded ingage in 2013. ingage designs, builds, distributes and licences Investor Relations software in a SaaS model. Before this, Michael spent 18 years in the capital markets, 10 as a portfolio manager and buy-side analyst and 8 on the sell-side at Cazenove & Co where he was a partner. Building on traditional IR CRM, the ingage platform helps quoted companies and other third parties manage a modern IR function; internalise a direct investor engagement & corporate access capability; adapt efficiently to new regulation; and deliver unique insight and reporting to IR, Executive Management and the Board. 9 years from launch, we’re privileged to work for quoted corporates in 15 markets around the world, including some 25% of FTSE 100 companies in the UK.

Claire Kane Claire Kane
Director of Investor Relations, NatWest

Claire joined NatWest Group Investor Relations in July 2020 and was promoted to Director of IR in January 2024. Prior to this Claire worked as a sell-side analyst covering the UK and European banking sector for 12 years, most recently at Credit Suisse. Claire started her career at Deloitte and is a Chartered Accountant and CFA charter holder. Hobbies or other interests – spending time with my young children and socialising with friends when I get the chance

Phil Sparks Phil Sparks
Director of Investor Relations, AstraZeneca

Philip Sparks has worked in the equity markets for over 25 years, first as an analyst and latterly in investor relations. An engineer by training, he started his career in the Ministry of Defence, before moving into equity research, covering semiconductor stocks at HSBC, and then Evolution Securities. In 2013 Philip moved into investor relations at Arm Holdings, and collaborated with SoftBank’s investor relations team following Softbank’s acquisition of Arm in 2016. He then worked in a strategic planning role at Arm, and spent lockdown preparing Arm’s response to a bid approach from Nvidia. Philip returned to investor relations in 2021, when he made the leap from silicon tech to biotech and joined AstraZeneca.

Rossa White Rossa White
Head of Group Investor Relations, DCC

Mr. Rossa White is Head of Group Investor Relations at FTSE-100 listed DCC plc, one of Ireland’s largest multinational companies. Before joining DCC at the start of 2021, he was Chief Economist and Deputy Director at Ireland’s National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA). He was part of the team that led Ireland back to the Government bond market following the banking crisis of 2007-2011, having set up an economics and investor relations team at the Treasury in September 2010. He began his career at Ireland’s largest capital markets and wealth management firm Davy as an economist in 2002, becoming Chief Economist in March 2008. Rossa holds two first-class honours degrees from University College Dublin.

10:55 - 11:40

Marconi Room

  • Sponsored by
  • Luminous

Breakout: Providing Investors with Decision-useful Information

Breakout Session: This panel discussion, curated by Luminous, will update attendees on key regulatory changes on the horizon and provide early insights into key reporting trends based on our Reporting Matters research – a yearly review of best practice reporting in areas such as ESG integration, governance, digital reporting, and reporting on the use of AI. During the discussion, we will delve into the proactive approaches of early adopters outside of the UK who have already incorporated elements of the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive and IFRS 1 and 2 into their annual reports. These practical insights can inspire and motivate us all.

Stephen Butler Stephen Butler
Investor Engagement & ESG Director, Luminous

Stephen Butler leads our Investor Communications & ESG division and sits on our Exec Board. In his 12 years at Luminous, he has led our core investor communications division from a strategic perspective, and his work has been recognised through multiple awards from the UK’s most respected industry organisations. His strategy team consists of reporting best practices, research, ESG, investor analysis and wider investor communications experts who help clients develop meaningful reporting strategies and offer advice on content, messaging, regulation, and framework alignment. Stephen holds a BA (Hons), a Certificate in Investor Relations and a Postgraduate Certificate in Corporate Governance and Business Ethics. He is a member of the IR Society’s policy committee and the FRC’s Advisory Panel.

Lucy Hagger Lucy Hagger
Associate Director, Sustainability and Impact, Luminous

Lucy has over a decade’s experience advising businesses on sustainability reporting best practise, strategy and communications. She works with leading UK and global businesses across a variety of sectors, in particular in food systems, retail and tech. Her recent clients include Tetra Pak, Sage, Aldi, ECOM, OVO and FirstGroup. Prior to joining Luminous, Lucy worked for sustainability communications agency, Flag. She holds a BSc in Biology and has completed the Sustainable Business Management Programme with the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership.

Kay Kayachith Kay Kayachith
Associate Director, Investor Communications & ESG, Luminous

Kay has over 10 years of corporate reporting experience. She has a background in financial services, working for JPMorgan Chase in structured finance and Thomson Financial as a Financial Analyst, so she has a strong understanding of financial reporting. Kay has over 6 years’ experience working in financial public relations. Kay helps clients effectively convey their stories through strategic advice, audience-focused insights and tailored communications. Kay graduated with a BA in Economics from The University of Texas in Austin.

11:45 – 12:30

Kelvin Lecture Theatre

Views from the Buy side

Our expert panel will share their views on a broad range of current topics including the state and outlook for the UK listed environment, emerging trends and what they consider to be best practice investor engagement.

Moderator: Evan Davis Moderator: Evan Davis
Journalist and Broadcaster

Evan Davis is the presenter of the Radio 4 daily news and current affairs show PM. He is also the host of Dragons Den and the Radio 4 business discussion programme the Bottom Line. Until November 2018, he presented Newsnight on BBC2. And prior to that he was a presenter of the Today programme on BBC Radio 4. He also spent seven years as the Economics Editor of the BBC. Before joining the BBC in 1993, he was an economist at the Institute for Fiscal Studies and at the London Business School. Evan's latest book is called Post Truth: Why we have reached Peak Bullshit and what we can do about it.

Bilquis Ahmed Bilquis Ahmed
European Equity Research - Retail, JP Morgan Asset Management

Bilquis Ahmed, executive director, is a research analyst within the J.P. Morgan Asset Management International Equity Group, focused on the European Retail sector. An employee since 1998, Bilquis joined the firm as a graduate trainee. Bilquis previously worked in the Global Metrics and MIS Group, as well as the Consolidated Asset Management Reporting Group. Bilquis obtained a BA in economics from Cornell University and earned a MSc. in finance from the London Business School.

Drew Gillanders Drew Gillanders
Head of Europe – Citadel International Equities

Drew Gillanders returned to Citadel in June 2023 after previously serving as a healthcare and consumer portfolio manager at the firm from 2019 to 2022. Drew has more than 20 years of investment experience across long/short and event-driven strategies in the U.S. and Europe. Prior to joining Citadel, Drew was a portfolio manager at Point72 and Head of European Risk Arbitrage at Och-Ziff. Earlier in his career, he held senior investment roles within Merrill Lynch’s Global Proprietary Trading Group, SAC Capital, and North Sound Capital. He began his career in M&A and Restructuring at Morgan Stanley in New York. Drew earned a Bachelor’s degree from University of Toronto’s Trinity College.

Jean Roche Jean Roche
Fund Manager, Schroders

Lead Manager of the Schroder UK Mid Cap Fund Plc since January 2021, Co-manager since September 2016 Joined Schroders in 2016 as UK Equity small and mid cap fund manager Analyst/fund manager at Hargreave Hale (now Canaccord), prior. Previously worked on the sell-side for 10 years at Panmure Gordon and Morgan Stanley Investment career commenced in 1999 CFA Charter Holder MSc in Financial and Industrial Mathematics, Dublin City University and BA, Mathematics and French, National University of Ireland, Galway

Jimmy Tillotson Jimmy Tillotson
Partner, Redwheel

Jimmy is a Partner at Redwheel and portfolio manager of the Redwheel European Focus Fund. Jimmy has over 20 years of investing experience, having previously been a Director at Hermes working on both the UK and European Focus Funds, before joining Redwheel in 2012. He also served as a director on the Board of portfolio company Opus Group AB from 2018 to 2020. Jimmy holds an MA in Economics from the University of Edinburgh and is a CFA Charterholder.

11:45 - 12:30

Marconi Room

  • Sponsored by
  • Visible Alpha

Breakout: Data-driven communications throughout the earnings cycle

Breakout Session: Delivering proactive and consistent communications with stakeholders throughout the earnings cycle is central to the effectiveness of the IRO role. But developing and maintaining clear communication is constantly challenged by shifting market forces and geopolitical events beyond the company’s foresight or control. So, how do IROs influence the narrative and ensure they and their stakeholders remain on the same page on the KPIs and metrics that matter throughout the earnings cycle? This panel explores data-driven strategies employed by leading IROs to: • Proactively engage stakeholders with data insights before, during and after earnings calls • Communicate a consistent framework for how they are approaching issues with transparent logic • Understand and contextualise both the long -term and rapidly shifting short-term story of the company throughout the earnings cycle.

Moderator: Paul Boland Moderator: Paul Boland
VP Sell-side Services, Visible Alpha, now a part of S&P Global Market Intelligence

Paul Boland is Senior Director, Head of Contributor Relations, APAC & EMEA, at Visible Alpha, which is now a part of S&P Global, operating within the company’s Market Intelligence division. He is responsible for leading the company’s partnerships with the sell side across APAC and EMEA, which includes building Visible Alpha’s data panel and ingesting and entitling sell-side content. Prior to joining Visible Alpha in 2020, Paul worked on the sell side in research and spec sales roles. He has been working with equity fundamental forecast data since 2017 when he joined Bloomberg LLP to work with their equity estimates products.

James Dodwell James Dodwell
Director, Investor Relations, GSK

James Dodwell is a Director of Investor Relations at GSK. Prior to joining GSK in 2012, he worked as a sell-side equity research analyst at several investment banks including Jefferies and Credit Suisse. James holds a degree in Chinese Studies from the University of Leeds.

Emily Rubin-Delanchy Emily Rubin-Delanchy
Head of Shareholder Intelligence, EMEA, S&P Global Market Intelligence

Emily leads S&P Global’s EMEA Shareholder Intelligence team. Emily has over 15 years’ experience in IR, having held numerous roles within S&P Global's Advisory business specialising in the Germanic and French speaking markets. Emily joined S&P from the Investor Relations Advisory Team of UBS Corporate Broking where she serviced UK Corporates. She previously held Consultancy roles with Citigate Dewe Rogerson and Edelman Smithfield supporting UK and European teams on their IR Strategy.

Robert Simmons Robert Simmons
Investor Relations Manager, Antofagasta

Rob Simmons is a geologist by training and has worked for a range of mining companies listed in London over the past 18 years, covering precious metals, base metals and bulk commodities, across roles in investor relations, sustainability and business development. He is Investor Relations Manager for Antofagasta plc, which is a FTSE 100 mining company focused on copper mining in Chile.

12:30 – 13:30

Riverside Room

Lunch and Exhibitor Showcase

13:35 – 13:45

Kelvin Lecture Theatre

Welcome Back with the Conference Host

Evan Davis Evan Davis
Journalist and Broadcaster

Evan Davis is the presenter of the Radio 4 daily news and current affairs show PM. He is also the host of Dragons Den and the Radio 4 business discussion programme the Bottom Line. Until November 2018, he presented Newsnight on BBC2. And prior to that he was a presenter of the Today programme on BBC Radio 4. He also spent seven years as the Economics Editor of the BBC. Before joining the BBC in 1993, he was an economist at the Institute for Fiscal Studies and at the London Business School. Evan's latest book is called Post Truth: Why we have reached Peak Bullshit and what we can do about it.

13:45 – 14:15

Kelvin Lecture Theatre

Afternoon Keynote

In conversation with Evan Davis, Dominic will cover a broad range of discussion areas including his career to date, and the transition from a professional athlete to a corporate executive, and his views on leadership and organisational change.

Dominic Mahoney Dominic Mahoney
Partner, EY Lane4, EY Professional Services

Dominic is a British former modern pentathlete, and Olympic Bronze medallist. Dominic has 12 years’ service in the British Army rising to the rank of Major, including two years as a leadership development instructor at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst. Dominic is Vice President of Pentathlon GB and has been appointed MBE for services to Modern Pentathlon. He is also Executive Chair at The British Elite Athletes Association. A partner at EY Professional Services, Dominic has over 20 years of leadership development, organisational change, consulting and executive coaching experience. Some of his projects include: consulting on a major organisational change programme with Sainsbury’s, and acting as Senior executive team coach with executive teams at Bourne Leisure, Card Factory, HomeServe, EDF Energy, Places for People, Johnson Matthey, Coca-Cola, Novartis, British Airways and easyJet. Dominic has also developed a coaching accreditation programme to increase internal capability at Royal Mail in the lead up to privatisation; and designed and delivered a multi-year senior executive talent succession programme at Nationwide Building Society. he also operated as the lead consultant for the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) People Change programme and was lead consultant on multiple leadership development programmes in the Public sector with the Home Office and various NHS Trusts.

14:20 – 15:05

Kelvin Lecture Theatre

Getting on Investors’ Radars

This practical plenary session will explore how IROs can access different pools of capital, how they can use different communications tools and ideas to attract investor attention and how to make the optimal use of advisors.

Moderator: Evan Davis Moderator: Evan Davis
Journalist and Broadcaster

Evan Davis is the presenter of the Radio 4 daily news and current affairs show PM. He is also the host of Dragons Den and the Radio 4 business discussion programme the Bottom Line. Until November 2018, he presented Newsnight on BBC2. And prior to that he was a presenter of the Today programme on BBC Radio 4. He also spent seven years as the Economics Editor of the BBC. Before joining the BBC in 1993, he was an economist at the Institute for Fiscal Studies and at the London Business School. Evan's latest book is called Post Truth: Why we have reached Peak Bullshit and what we can do about it.

Louise Curran Louise Curran
Head of Investor Relations, Johnson Matthey

Louise has a decade of experience in Investor Relations across multiple sectors and for global companies spanning UK, US and Australian listing regimes. Louise is currently Head of Investor Relations at Johnson Matthey, having joined as Senior Investor Relations Manager in 2018. Previously she was Investor Relations Manager at Janus Henderson – formerly Henderson – where she was involved in the communication of a transformational, cross-border merger of equals. Prior to this, Louise worked for a strategy consultancy having initially qualified as a Chartered Accountant with KPMG. Louise completed her MChem in Chemistry at the University of Oxford.

Matthew Hall Matthew Hall
Vice Chairman, UK Investment Banking, UBS

Matt is Vice Chairman of UK Investment Banking at UBS, having previously worked at Credit Suisse as Co-Head of UK Investment Banking and Corporate Broking. Matt started his career at Credit Suisse in 1997 where he worked until 2010 before spending 10 years at Deutsche Bank where he ran the Corporate Broking business. Matt’s current clients include Bunzl, CCH, Halma and Intertek and over the last 27 years in the broking industry, he has advised the likes of Barratt Developments, Carphone Warehouse, BAT, Diageo, IAG, ITV, RB, Stagecoach and Talktalk. Matt is also a Board Member of the IR Society.

James Melville-Ross James Melville-Ross
Partner, Dentons Global Advisors

James Melville-Ross has extensive strategic communications experience, gained throughout a 30-year career that has included work in Europe, the US and the Far East. James has a track record in providing senior counsel to companies in areas such as reputation management, financial communications, employee relations, issues management, media relations and capital markets transactions.

14:20 - 15:05

Marconi Room

  • Sponsored by
  • Morrow Sodali

Breakout: The Other Side of the Buy Side

Breakout Session: As the importance of stewardship grows for asset owners, the world’s biggest fund managers have more than doubled their stewardship teams in recent years, with many establishing broader ESG teams to drive increased focus on sustainable investing. The purpose of this session is to explore how these important stakeholders operate, their role in decision-making, the issues they are focused on, what they expect from companies and the best way to engage with them. Chaired by Morrow Sodali, this panel discussion brings together three heads of stewardship from prominent investment managers and will explore a range of pertinent issues, including: • Insight into the operational dynamics of stewardship teams, their influence in decision-making, their coordination with portfolio managers, and their approach to voting and engagement • A broader examination of ESG approaches, including how these principles are integrated into investment decisions and any emerging trends or shifts in strategy • The role of boards in investor engagement and investor expectations regarding access to chairs and board directors • Key drivers of engagement and outlook for the remainder of 2024 and fiscal year 2025 • Information requirements and recommendations for ESG and corporate reporting • Practical tips for effective engagement and best practice examples

Alison Owers Alison Owers
Senior Managing Director, Morrow Sodali

Alison Owers is a Senior Managing Director at Morrow Sodali and is the Head of the UK. She is responsible for designing and overseeing the UK strategy and providing a broad range of ESG and shareholder engagement services to UK clients. Alison is a recognized people leader with demonstrated experience in leading and driving transformational change. She has a wealth of investor relations and analytical experience, and extensive global leadership experience managing diverse multi-disciplinary teams. Before joining Morrow Sodali, Alison spent 12 years at Orient Capital and D.F. King Ltd in various senior leadership roles in the UK and EMEA and most recently as their Global CEO. Prior to this, she spent seven years at Capita plc as their Head of Investor Relations Services before being promoted to Managing Director of IR Services. Alison is a Board Member of the UK’s Investor Relations Society and the chair of their Membership Committee.

Roland Bosch Roland Bosch
Analyst - Sustainable Investment and ESG, Lazard Asset Management

Roland M. Bosch is a Governance Analyst on the Sustainable Investment and ESG team. Prior to joining Lazard in 2022, Roland was a senior investment stewardship specialist with Federated Hermes International, where he was sector lead for financial services and responsible for corporate engagements in Europe and the US. Prior to joining Federated Hermes, he worked as an investment manager at F&C Asset Management, where he was responsible for managing institutional equity portfolios, as well as providing investment analysis and recommendations. Before that, Roland was based in the Netherlands, working as an investment manager for insurance group Achmea and as an equity analyst at HSBC James Capel. Roland is a certified investment analyst (RBA), EFFAS financial analyst and holds a master’s degree in Business Economics from University of Groningen. Roland is fluent in Dutch and English, with a good working knowledge of German and French.

Matteo Passero Matteo Passero
Investment Stewardship Analyst - Director, UBS

Matteo is a Stewardship Analyst at UBS Asset Management, focusing primarily on Europe and Japan. He is responsible for assessing governance and wider ESG practices of investee companies within UBS AM portfolios, and he spends most of his time on engagement with listed companies and proxy voting. As part of his role, he works very closely with investment teams, including financial analysts and portfolio managers, to link engagement and voting decisions to the investment case and to promote best practice across a wide range of ESG topics. He joined UBS in 2020 after three years at ISS, the leading proxy advisor, where he worked in the UK Benchmark research team, drafting voting recommendations for the AGMs of major listed UK companies, and successively for ISS Corporate Solutions, where he advised corporates on how to improve their governance practices.

Sarah Relich Sarah Relich
Head of Investment Stewardship, EMEA & APAC, Vanguard

Sarah Relich leads Vanguard’s Investment Stewardship team responsible for proxy voting and engagement across the EMEA and APAC regions. The team is responsible for promoting strong corporate governance practices on behalf of Vanguard’s internally managed equity funds. Sarah also leads the program’s communications function, which is responsible for conveying Investment Stewardship’s perspectives to fund investors, portfolio companies, and other market participants. Before her current role, she held senior roles on Vanguard’s Investment Stewardship team covering the Americas region. Previously, she was an investment analyst in Vanguard’s Investment Strategy Group, where she led research on environmental, social, and governance topics. Prior to Vanguard, Sarah served as a Teach For America corps member. She earned a B.A. from Kenyon College, an M.S.Ed. from The Johns Hopkins University, and an M.B.A. from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.  

15:05 – 15:45

Riverside Room

Afternoon Break and Exhibitor Showcase

15:45 – 16:30

Kelvin Lecture Theatre

The Future of the Sell Side

This final plenary session will look at the various ways that the sell side is changing in terms of structure, products and its relationship with corporates and the buy side. The panel will offer their insight on key issues affecting the day to day role of the IRO including trends and innovations in equity research, managing consensus, guidance and more.

Moderator: Evan Davis Moderator: Evan Davis
Journalist and Broadcaster

Evan Davis is the presenter of the Radio 4 daily news and current affairs show PM. He is also the host of Dragons Den and the Radio 4 business discussion programme the Bottom Line. Until November 2018, he presented Newsnight on BBC2. And prior to that he was a presenter of the Today programme on BBC Radio 4. He also spent seven years as the Economics Editor of the BBC. Before joining the BBC in 1993, he was an economist at the Institute for Fiscal Studies and at the London Business School. Evan's latest book is called Post Truth: Why we have reached Peak Bullshit and what we can do about it.

Rachel Kent Rachel Kent
Senior Consultant, Hogan Lovells

In March 2023, Rachel was appointed by HM Treasury to chair the independent Investment Research Review which reported in July 2023. Rachel continues to work with industry, regulators and HM Treasury on implementing the recommendations of the Review. Rachel is also the Financial Regulators Complaints Commissioner as of 1 January 2024. Prior to this she was a senior partner in the financial services regulatory team at Hogan Lovells where she advised banks, insurers, investment and wealth managers and financial market infrastructures. Rachel continues to work with Hogan Lovells as a Senior Consultant. Prior appointments include Rachel’s role as vice-chair of the Policy and Regulation chapter of the ‘Kalifa Review’ in 2020. Described as a ‘Regulatory Brainbox’ by Financial News, Rachel is a stand-out regulatory lawyer and a market leader in relation to Brexit regulatory advice. Rachel previously served as Chair of the International Regulatory Strategy Group (IRSG) UK Regulation Committee on international access and competitiveness and was the lead author on three of their post-Brexit reports. Rachel is part of the Legal 500 ‘Hall of Fame’ for Financial Services Regulatory and has been described by a client as ‘the best all-round financial services partner in the City’ (Legal 500, 2021). From 2017 to 2023 Rachel has been recognised as one of the ‘100 Most Influential Women in Finance’ and in September 2023, Rachel was named the most Innovative Practitioner at the FT Innovative Lawyer Europe Awards 2023. Additional prior appointments include being a member of the City of London and Innovate Finance's Fintech Strategy Board, CityUK's Europe Technical Advisory Group, HMT's Expert Trade Advisory Group, TISA’s Strategic Advisory Board, Innovate Finance’s Policy Committee and the Financial Market's Law Committee.

Ed Matthews Ed Matthews
Managing Director, UK Investment Banking, Jefferies

Ed is a Managing Director in the UK and Ireland Investment banking team at Jefferies having joined in April 2018 . A Chartered Accountant (Price Waterhouse) he joined BZW in Jan 1994 and has spent 30 years as a UK investment banker / corporate broker having also worked for Credit Suisse, Citigroup, Lehman Brothers and Nomura. He is a UK generalist and has advised many UK companies across most sectors – his current clients include Inchcape, Jet2, Hays, Shaftesbury Capital, Spirent Communications, THG and Frasers Group. Ed read Accountancy and Economics at Exeter University and also currently sits on the Exeter University Business School International Advisory Board.

Stuart Morgan Stuart Morgan
Head of Investor Relations, IAG

Stuart is currently Head of Investor Relations at International Airlines Group (IAG). Prior to this Stuart was in similar roles at Capita, easyJet, National Express and Eurofins Scientific. Stuart holds a degree in Law and Accounting from the University of Manchester. He is a Chartered Accountant having qualified at PwC.

Sanjay Vidyarthi Sanjay Vidyarthi
Support services and special situations analyst, Liberum

Sanjay Vidyarthi is an equity research analyst at Liberum with over 20 years’ experience on the sell-side. He has covered a broad range of companies, predominantly in the UK small and mid-cap market, focusing on the general retail sector and, more recently, on business services. He started his City career at Cazenove and also held roles at Dresdner Kleinwort and Redburn. He has a degree in English Literature from Peterhouse, Cambridge.

16:30 – 17:00

Kelvin Lecture Theatre

Closing Keynote

In conversation with Evan Davis, Robert will reflect on his successful career, share his views on the role of the board and the executive, as well as discuss the conference theme and offer views on the key issues for corporates in the current environment.

Robert Pickering Robert Pickering
Chair of the Board, Marex

Robert Pickering began his career at Allen & Overy before joining Cazenove & Co. in 1985. He became the firm’s first Chief Executive in 2001, aged just 41, and was responsible for building Cazenove’s financial advisory practice, conceiving and executing its transformation from a stockbroking partnership into a leading investment bank. In 2004, he negotiated and led its highly successful joint venture with J.P.Morgan, leaving the firm in 2008. The story of Robert’s time at Cazenove was related in his best-selling book Blue Blood, Cazenove in the age of Global Banking which was published last year. Since 2008 Robert has acted as an adviser to private individuals and boards, specialising in financial services. He is currently Board Chair at Marex Group plc, the diversified financial services platform, which listed on NASDAQ in May of this year. Robert lives with his family between London and Kent. He enjoys country sports and scaring himself on the race track in his own race car.

17.00 – 17.15

Kelvin Lecture Theatre

Closing Remarks from the Conference Host

Evan Davis Evan Davis
Journalist and Broadcaster

Evan Davis is the presenter of the Radio 4 daily news and current affairs show PM. He is also the host of Dragons Den and the Radio 4 business discussion programme the Bottom Line. Until November 2018, he presented Newsnight on BBC2. And prior to that he was a presenter of the Today programme on BBC Radio 4. He also spent seven years as the Economics Editor of the BBC. Before joining the BBC in 1993, he was an economist at the Institute for Fiscal Studies and at the London Business School. Evan's latest book is called Post Truth: Why we have reached Peak Bullshit and what we can do about it.

17:15 – 17:30

Kelvin Lecture Theatre

Conference Close from the Chair of the IR Society

Douglas Radcliffe Douglas Radcliffe
Group Investor Relations Director, Lloyds Banking Group

Douglas is Group Investor Relations Director at Lloyds Banking Group, having led the team for the last eight years and been a senior member of the team at Lloyds Bank and subsequently Lloyds Banking Group for the last fifteen years. Prior to joining the Investor Relations team Douglas held management positions within Group Strategy, Group Risk and Private Banking having initially joined Lloyds Bank on the graduate development programme.

17:30 – 19:00

Riverside Room

Networking Drinks Reception

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