Meet the Team
Mike is a Chartered Accountant who, on leaving the profession, spent 18 years in Corporate Banking working for a US Bank. His roles included Head of Audit, CFO and COO for the Bank’s International operations. For the last 10 years he has worked as CFO or COO for a number of fast growing companies owned by Private Equity or other investment firms.
The industries covered include: Life Insurance; Anti-Money Laundering Due Diligence; Offshore Company Formation and Administration and Social Media Analytics (SaaS). Mike joined XPS in October 2015 and as CFO, Mike is responsible for the finance, legal and compliance functions.
John Batting was CEO of Punter Southall Ltd between 2004 and 2018. He was one of the four founders of BGJ & Co Limited; an actuarial consulting business which was established in 1993 and subsequently merged with the Punter Southall businesses in 2002. John is a Scheme Actuary with over 38 years of experience in the actuarial profession; providing pensions and investment advice to both trustees and sponsoring companies, and has acted as an expert witness on pension matters.
Jonathan is a senior actuary with over 25 years’ experience in the pensions industry. He joined XPS in June 2015 and was made Head of Pensions at XPS in January 2016. Jonathan is responsible for the pensions consulting/actuarial business, as well as wider business matters.
His main responsibility is to ensure there is effective management of the Pensions business at all office locations of the Group. He assures that the business runs efficiently and as one team of highly motivated staff, and that XPS’s strategy is successfully implemented. Jonathan provides advice on all aspects of UK pension schemes for some of XPS’s largest clients.
Prior to joining XPS, Jonathan was a senior partner at Mercer, UK. He has extensive experience of operational management, having run Mercer’s Tower Retirement Unit for approximately five years before taking on a regional management role. His last role at Mercer was as UK Chief Actuary, where Jonathan managed commercial risks across Mercer’s Retirement Consulting business; as well as leading on all aspects of professionalism and quality for approximately 500 qualified and trainee actuaries.
Jane is responsible for managing XPS Pensions Group’s client communication programme, including frequent briefing notes and news alerts on emerging developments. She and her team also make sure that XPS colleagues are kept fully up to date on all technical developments.
Jane represents XPS Pensions Group on a number of industry committees, including the ACA Pension Schemes Committee of which she is Deputy Chair, and is also Secretary to the 100 Group Pensions Committee.
Jane used to be a lecturer in Classics, and wrote a doctorate on Greek tragedy, before she decided that pensions provide at least as much drama!
Peter joined the business straight from university and has been working in it for over twenty years. He advises a range of trustee and corporate clients, and is head of actuarial graduate recruitment.
On the Scheme Actuary side, his recent experience includes advising trustees on a Pensions Regulator moral hazard case. He is responsible for running the accounting exercises under UK, international and US GAAP for our larger corporate clients; and in recent years has also been involved in some large expert witness cases
He is a keen sports fan and still turns out for the office cricket team.
Andy runs the SIPP and SSAS business here at XPS Pensions Group and is the FCA Authorised Person at CF1 Director level. He is responsible for all aspects of performance of this business from strategy, through product, marketing, sales, systems, and customer service. Andy’s been in and around the pensions industry for some 30 years, working across individual and corporate pensions and as far afield as Asia. A passion for providing the very best, personally delivered, service to both clients and regulated financial advisers is at his core – and doing this well has grown our specialist SIPP and SSAS team to over 70 "clever and talented" people.
Andy’s run a marathon or two in his time, and plays a bit of golf, but his sporting passion has remained tennis. He still competes in the county (old timers!) league, albeit at a somewhat slower pace than years past; and with a growing fondness of the after match refreshment.
Ben is a senior actuary with around 20 years’ experience in the pensions industry and advises a wide range of trustees and corporate sponsors on all matters relating to pension provision. Ben joined XPS in April 2014, and is primarily responsible for the day to day operations of the business. This covers the provision of services to XPS’s existing clients, revenue generation and the Group’s people agenda.
Since joining XPS in April 2014, he has played a key role in the development and implementation of the strategy for XPS as well as the hiring of key staff and development of new services and infrastructure.
Ben joined XPS from KPMG in London where he played a key role in its development from a small team to one of the leading providers of corporate pensions advisory services.
Sarah is a qualified actuary with over 15 years of experience advising trustees and employers on a range of issues affecting their schemes. Sarah is a specialist in scheme funding on how future regulatory change might affect valuation assumptions and approaches adopted by clients. She is also a specialist in pensions tax and the implications of the introduction of pension freedoms.
John is an experienced Scheme Actuary and has been advising both trustees and employers on all aspects of pensions for around 35 years. He has seen dramatic changes to the UK pensions over this period and sees his role as assisting and advising clients on how they can navigate their way through issues to achieve their aims, for their pension schemes and their businesses.
John currently divides his time between leading a number of XPS client teams and leading the wider office in building the XPS business in Leeds. He has learnt over the course of his career that the feature which will enable XPS to differentiate itself, is a focus on providing excellent client service. Consequently, excellent client service is what he strives to achieve for his personal clients and also for the wider office clients.
Aside from work, John is married with two grown up daughters, who he claims he can still embarrass! In his younger days he was a keen sportsman but now spends more time watching than playing.
With a background in scheme actuary consultancy and M&A transactions, Colette became one of the founding partners of Pension Insurance Corporation in 2007. Since then she has advised a wide range of pension schemes on bulk annuities and de-risking solutions, and was also a member of the senior management team that established Scottish Widows bulk annuity proposition. She has led a number of high profile transactions including the £680m NCR transaction with experience of transactions totalling over £10bn of liabilities. Colette has a strong focus on doing what is most efficient for the client, and developed Punter Southall’s streamlined de-risking service in 2015.
Colette has a keen interest in genetics and has recently completed a biology degree with the Open University researching the impact of changes in DNA on ageing.
Geoff is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group with responsibility for the management and growth of the Belfast office. A Chartered Financial Planner and Fellow of the Personal Finance Society, he has wide experience of pensions, having worked for two FTSE 100 pension providers, then as Managing Director of a wealth management business, before joining XPS. In addition to promoting services to new clients and other pension professionals, Geoff advises clients across a number of the offices in respect of their Defined Contribution pension schemes and sits on the national DC Growth Group. He is a regular contributor to local media on pension related matters, a council member of the Insurance Institute of Northern Ireland and past Chairman of the Personal Finance Society in Northern Ireland.
In his spare him, Geoff is a keen cyclist, golfer, follower of Ulster and Ireland rugby and Liverpool FC. Geoff claims that had he not pursued a career in pensions, he would have won Olympic Hockey Gold, the US Masters Golf and the Tour de France, but not necessarily in that order.
With over 29 years' pensions administration experience, Stephen works with companies and trustees to deliver a first class pension administration service ensuring a high quality member experience.
Stephen is responsible for the operational management of our offices in Belfast, Reading and Wokingham including pension administration, pension accounts and banking.
In Stephen’s spare time, he enjoys cycling and, as strange as it may seem, he prefers cycling up long mountains in France, Italy and Spain, with the thrill of the descent as the reward for the hard work getting to the top!
Paul, who is a qualified actuary with over 20 years’ experience in the pensions industry, is Co-Chief Executive Officer alongside Ben Bramhall. Paul was a partner at KPMG for 8 years, and joined XPS in October 2016. Immediately prior to joining XPS, Paul was head of the KPMG London pensions team, where he was instrumental in growing the London pensions business.
Paul is primarily responsible for raising the profile of XPS in the market and generating new business. This covers both growing the client base in the Group’s traditional service areas, and the development of new service offerings to help clients meet the challenges they face as the market evolves.
Paul is also responsible for the Group’s strategy with regard to acquisitions and investment, including, for example, the development of technology.
Paul's current role is to oversee various aspects of the integration of the Xafinity and Punter Southall businesses, bringing together the “best of both” for the benefit of our clients and our staff. Previously he was Head of Proposition Development, responsible for developing a range of propositions that help clients with their pension issues.
Alongside the above, Paul has also undertaken a range of work for clients – ranging from transfer value analysis (“TVAS”) to buy-in and buy-out.
Paul is fortunate enough to live in Devon and is passionate about growing food and caring for a motley crew of birds – currently 4 turkeys, 3 ducks, 18 hens and 1 cockerel.
Richard is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group. He has an actuarial background with over 25 years’ experience working in the pensions industry. He is responsible for managing the actuarial work for some of our larger clients as both a consultant and trustee secretary. Richard has significant experience of helping companies and trustees understand and manage their DB pension arrangements; including those entering the Pension Protection Fund, and works as a both a trustee and corporate advisor.
In his spare time, Richard enjoys all things car related and still dreams of becoming a racing driver!
Gary is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group. He is responsible for leading the operational side of our administration business and chairs our admin Operations Committee, helping to maintain the highest standards of governance and service levels across the business. He also retains several client facing roles, and is involved in marketing and business development. Gary has particular experience of large first time outsourcing contracts, having spent time on secondment with in-house schemes in management support roles to aid transition. He also has considerable experience in dispute resolution, having been a Fellow of TPAS for over a decade.
In his spare time he amuses himself with the various items of coin-operated machinery he has acquired during late night ebay sessions.
Gerry is a consulting actuary with over 30 years' experience in corporate pensions, specialising in actuarial and investment advice to trustee and corporate clients. As office head, he is responsible for all aspects of the Edinburgh office including client management, staff resourcing, finances, client growth and retention.
Gerry's excellent Edinburgh team take pride in delivering a professional, pragmatic and personal service to clients, that cuts through the jungle of industry jargon. This approach has helped to grow revenue by over 20% per annum over the last decade.
Away from work, he is a long term survivor of a very feminist household. To escape, he spends a lot of time hiding in the garage on DIY projects, playing chess online or raking bunkers in golf courses.
Ben is responsible for all aspects of the Finance function at XPS Pensions Group. From raising invoices and paying bills; to management reporting, financial accounting and tax. He is committed to the successful integration of Xafinity and Punter Southall to ensure our business meets its strategic goals. In his time at the firm, Ben has seen lots of changes and has significant experience in managing those changes from a finance perspective, including during mergers, acquisitions, and system implementations.
In his spare time, when he’s not ferrying his children to and from activities, Ben enjoys sports and still plays football regularly, although he doesn’t get around the pitch as quickly as he used to.
Wendy is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group and has worked in the Guildford office for 21 years. She is a Scheme Actuary and an investment consultant, working on a wide range of clients, including not-for-profit. Wendy is also responsible for overseeing the actuarial study support at XPS.
In her spare time, Wendy enjoys running and has completed 11 marathons. The time commitment to marathon training (and aging bones) means that Wendy is now putting in fewer miles but can still be seen most Saturday mornings running at her local Parkrun in Guildford.
Chris is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group. As well as looking after a selection of Scheme Actuary and corporate clients, Chris has responsibility for growing the XPS business in the North of England and ensuring that existing and prospective clients hear about our best ideas. Recently Chris has been working with schemes to address the issues arising from the introduction of Freedom & Choice. In particular engaging with members appropriately, whilst controlling the risk of poor outcomes.
When not working Chris enjoys walking his dogs, especially to places that allow him to combine this with his love for eating and drinking out.
Adam heads up the investment team in Guildford, where he qualified as an actuary and has worked since 1999. The team prides itself on providing independent advice helping trustee and company clients focus their time and resources on the investment areas that really matter. And once decisions are made, the team ensures that any changes are implemented as cost effectively and quickly as possible through our sharp execution process.
Within the wider industry, Adam is a member of the investment committee for both the Association of Consulting Actuaries and the Society of Pensions Professionals; and a former marker for the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries’ investment and pension examinations.
Outside of work, Adam enjoys travelling to hot climates and watching cricket (ideally at the same time!).
Rachel is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group. She is responsible for the HR function encompassing a headcount of 900 across 15 UK sites.Rachel has significant experience of developing and implementing HR and People strategies whilst delivering effective HR team management. Rachel is solutions focused and has a proven track record of managing multiple projects for example, TUPE, M&A and Reward programmes competently. Rachel has excellent interpersonal and relationship management skills.
If Rachel wasn’t a HR professional she would have been a long distance lorry driver, she once drove a 50ft truck around a race track! In her spare time, Rachel enjoys running (although nothing too serious) and long walks in the countryside.
Ben is head of the Leeds Investment team comprising around 20 investment consultants. He helps companies and trustees manage risk through; integrated investment and funding solutions, through setting clear long term objectives and agreeing and implementing an investment and funding strategy to achieve them. He has also advised on wider risk management tools such as buy-ins, liability management and special purpose funding vehicles. Ben is a recognised public speaker on CDI investment strategies and aligning funding and investment approaches. Ben has been advising pension schemes for around 21 years.
In his spare time Ben loves playing tennis, cooking Indian food and watching quiz shows with his 10 year old daughter – he’s not yet found a way to combine all three!
John is an experienced actuary with a pragmatic approach to solving issues for clients. With over 15 years' experience, John provides actuarial investment and risk advice to trustee and corporate clients.
As a Scheme Actuary and an FCA regulated investment adviser, John is well placed to advise on a wide range of asset and liability issues. No situation is ever the same and John always looks to bring a fresh perspective to each client.
Within XPS, John is responsible for clients across Scotland and the North East of England and he is a regular speaker at our seminars. His client interests also include Charity and Housing sectors as well as providing Company accounting advice.
John likes to spend his spare time with his young family, particularly getting them involved in sport and exercise. John plays badminton and table tennis (all new but fun!).
Sarah is a Principal at XPS Administration. She is responsible for ensuring the administration service from both the London and Chelmsford offices is delivered to the highest standard and is directly involved with a number of our key administration clients.
Sarah has over 30 years' industry experience and is a Fellow of the Pensions Management Institute. She also chairs our Administration Services Group which is responsible for the maintenance and delivery of our central technical framework.
In her spare time (and in an attempt to keep fit) Sarah’s passion is mountain and road biking. She loves travelling, spending time with friends and family and enjoys regular trips to both the cinema and theatre.
Nick is a Principal at XPS Investment and is a Fellow of the Institute of Actuaries. Nick is known for providing clear and pragmatic advice around the full range of investment issues which pension schemes face. Nick is a member of XPS Pensions Group's Investment Committee, where he leads liability driven investment.
Outside the office, Nick keeps fit by running around after his two small children and is also a keen musician, peaking in the early nineties, when he sang on the backing vocals of a number one single.
Dave is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group. He is responsible for the Group’s DC proposition and services and heads the Group’s market leading Master Trust scheme, the National Pensions Trust. Dave has more than 30 years’ experience in all aspects of corporate DC having performed a variety of senior Executive and Director roles with a leading Global Insurer, both in the UK and Internationally. Dave has also been a Trustee of a £7bn pension fund for 8 years and worked with some of the largest DC clients in the UK.
In his spare time Dave messes around in kayaks, is an avid dog walker and is heavily involved with his sons in the Scout movement.
Bill is a Principal within the investment team based in the Leeds office. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Actuaries and was a Scheme Actuary for nearly 20 years' before deciding to focus solely on the delivery of the full range of investment consultancy services to a number of pension schemes; ranging in size from under £10 million to the hundreds of millions.
With nearly 40 years' in the pensions industry he had hoped that he would have seen it all by now, but he never ceases to be amazed by the variety of challenges he is asked to help his clients overcome. He has been advising some of his clients for over twenty years (so he must be doing something right).
His biggest worry is that he is turning into his Dad, who spent the last few years of his career decommissioning nuclear power stations. As defined benefit schemes seek to mitigate the various risks associated with them, and ultimately require advice on moving to a buyout solution, he sees the same fate awaiting him.
Julian has been providing pensions advice to both trustees and sponsoring employers for over 30 years, covering a wide range of defined benefit pension schemes from £5m to £2.5bn.
Julian's clients value him for being able to get to the heart of their issues quickly and to communicate with minimum jargon.
Away from the world of pensions, he spends his spare time running, cycling, playing the piano, and spoiling his many cats.
Rob has over 30 years’ experience in the pensions industry - 24 of those working for XPS (or one of its former companies).
He is Scheme Actuary to some of XPS’s largest clients as well as being responsible for the roll out of Radar across all clients.
Rob and his son are season ticket holders at Reading FC. Because of this, his favorite quotation is: "Don’t take life too seriously. You will never get out of it alive".
Martin is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group. He helps employers manage Defined Benefit pension schemes and advises on the pension implications of corporate transactions, including pensions due diligence and corporate pensions strategy.
Martin has specialist experience of the Railways Pension Scheme and its unique characteristics, currently advising around 20 employers with a shared cost section. In addition, Martin provides national media comment on various topical pension issues, like BHS and Tata Steel, including recent appearances on Radio 4, 5Live and Sky News.
In his spare time, Martin apparently enjoys subjecting himself to abject misery, being an avid follower of Dunfermline Athletic and the Scottish football team.
Clare has 24 years’ experience advising trustees and employers of trust based DB and DC schemes ranging in size from £4m to £5bn in all major aspects of investment consultancy and pensions actuarial. Her investment experience includes advising on asset allocation, de-risking strategies, LDI, manager selection and portfolio re-structuring. Her pensions consultancy experience includes advising on scheme funding, scheme mergers, modification of benefits, M&A situations, pensions accounting and buyout.
Clare chairs the firm’s DC Technical Committee and serves on the DC Growth Group and the ACA’s DC Committee. She also serves on the firm’s Professional Affairs Committee.
Outside of work Clare is an elected member of the Court of Common Council of the City of London Corporation and serves on the Investment and Finance Committees. She is a Past Master of the Fletchers’ Company and a Liveryman of the Actuaries’ Company.
Wes is the Office Head for XPS Pensions Group’s Manchester office. He acts as a Scheme Actuary advising trustees and employers on a wide range of pensions issues including; funding; risk management; liability management exercises; scheme changes; consultations and member engagement; participation in multi-employer schemes and buying-out liabilities. Wes brings a pragmatic approach, and is able to explain complex issues in a simple and engaging manner. He is part of our Social Housing team and our Governance team, drawing on his previous experience as UK Pension Manager for Tesco.
In his spare time, Wes enjoys playing with his two small children. Whilst talking to a careers adviser at secondary school, he stated he was either going to be a rock star or an actuary.
Neil joined the Company as a university graduate over twenty years ago. He has significant experience as both a trustee and corporate adviser, and currently looks after some of the firm’s largest clients.
As a Scheme Actuary, Neil has significant experience of helping his clients’ plan their long-term objectives, advising on sophisticated investment and funding strategies, running member option programs and implementing phased buy-ins along the way to eventual buyout.
As a corporate adviser, Neil has significant experience of advising a number of large sponsors of pension schemes with many billions of assets under management on benefit re-design, valuation and accounting matters, closure and liability management.
Outside of work, Neil is a doting father with two young children. As a keen rugby fan, he also enjoys following Bath and England, and playing touch rugby for his local club in Guildford.
Steve has over 25 years’ experience and is Scheme Actuary to a number of long standing clients of the firm. Many of his clients are large schemes and he has significant experience of the complexities relating to mature pension schemes. Steve also has a number of corporate clients and has advised on the pensions aspects of transactions and scheme closures. He has served on the main committee of the Association of Consulting Actuaries (“ACA”), as well as the public relations committee of both the ACA and the Institute of Actuaries.
Outside of work Steve follows his local football team, Woking FC, and has observed that the financial challenges of competing in non-league football make pensions seem simple!
Joanne is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group. She is responsible for ensuring that our wonderful technical function are talking about the things clients want to hear; and that our Scheme Actuaries have the best insights into the ever creative ways of showing how funding and member risks interact with other risks.
Joanne is a very experienced Scheme Actuary and trustee adviser, who also provides advice to other stakeholders. She has spent six years serving as a member of the Actuarial Council for the FRC, so has a keen interest in regulatory matters.
A passionate believer in lifelong learning which led her to take an MBA mid-career, she is currently trying to brush up her O-level French in order to spend more time avoiding the ski slopes in France with her much keener family.
Katherine’s main objective is to ensure the efficient running of our Investment Consultant business. She supports the finance, HR functions of the wider group from an investment aspect, and is currently heavily involved in the integration of both Xafinity and Punter Southall investment team business processes i.e. investment reporting; transition process; time management. She sits on the investment committee drawing on her previous role as Head of Manager Research for Punter Southall Investment Consulting.
Outside of work, Katherine has a passion for travelling and exploring new places (family permitting) and loves trying weird food.
Neil is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group and has two main roles.
The first is as a consultant providing advice and guidance to trustees and sponsoring employers, as well as support to members in navigating their way through the ever changing world of pensions.
The other is as the head of the Reading pensions team. He describes it as a busy and vibrant office with a great team of people.
Neil’s career (in his eyes) could have gone one of two ways; the exciting world of pensions or the lead singer in a boy-band – thankfully for us all pensions won!
Sankar is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group. He is responsible for ensuring that our best ideas are developed and shared for the benefit of clients across all our businesses, as well as bringing new clients to the group. Sankar has significant experience of helping companies and trustees to understand and manage their pension risks, and has worked as a corporate advisor, Scheme Actuary and investment consultant. Sankar also shares the benefit of his experience of working for a FTSE 100 company as pensions director, responsible for pensions risk and strategy across their global pension arrangements.
In his spare time, Sankar still attempts to play cricket. In addition, before deciding to enter the exciting world of pensions, he was going to be a children’s TV presenter!
Craig has over 20 years' of actuarial and investment consulting experience, and is experienced at helping schemes manage risk through integrated investment and funding solutions. Craig also heads up the investment team in our Reading office and is lead advisor to a selected number of clients.
One of his favourite quotes is from the Simpsons: “I think Smithers picked me because of my motivational skills. Everyone says they have to work a lot harder when I’m around.”
Chris is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group. Over his career, he has been a corporate advisor, Scheme Actuary and investment consultant, working with both trustees and sponsoring employers of all main types of pension arrangement. Chris has particularly specialised in advising on the management and mitigation of pension risks. He has a proven track record of building strong relationships with his clients, based on trust and quality of service. Chris also manages XPS Group’s involvement in the social housing sector, an important and expanding part of the Group’s business.
In his spare time, Chris devotes much of his life to supporting his daughter through her GCSEs. He is also learning to play the piano (currently, the piano is winning).
Patrick leads XPS Investment having previously led and built the Investment Advisory practice at KPMG. Patrick advises clients on the full range of investment issues. His clients range from £100m to £5bn. He is explains complex issues clearly helping clients make effective investment decisions. Patrick also advises clients selecting or reviewing full and partial fiduciary management. He is skilled at negotiating competitive commercial terms – he saved one client £20m.
When not working, Patrick spends time at home with his family or if they don’t notice he nips across the road and plays a few holes of golf.
Mary joined XPS Pensions Group in January 2008 as Principal and Head of Marketing and Business Development.
As a member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing, Mary has over 25 years experience in the pensions industry with most of that time spent promoting and communicating specialist pension services.
Colin is an experienced operations professional who specialises in tracing, identity verification and large scale communication projects. He believes in plain English and putting members first. He is responsible for creating, and leading the team who have completed the largest number of Trivial Commutation projects in our industry. Colin puts technological innovation at the forefront of these services, ensuring the best possible member experience.
He has spent 11 years in the pensions industry and a further 13 previously tracing missing heirs to estates and setting up findmypast.com, a leading genealogical website. His experience in tracing is second to none and clients can lose hours with him discussing their member tracing requirements – you could say it’s a passion!
Surprisingly, you can sometimes find Colin cycling around Kentish villages, and if you like alternative music, ask Colin about his missing years as a band Tour Manager prior to getting “a proper job”. He does have some interesting tales to tell.
Guy has over 20 years’ experience in pensions, both as an investment adviser and, previously, as a scheme actuary. He enjoys building relationships with his clients in order to help ensure their goals are achieved. Guy serves on XPS’s Risk Working Party and Investment Committee, the latter of which reviews all aspects of the Company’s investment policy and provides consulting direction to the client teams. He is a regular speaker at seminars.
Outside of work, Guy likes to fuel his ambition of one day managing a premier league football team by coaching his 14 year old son’s Sunday league side.
Lorant is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group. He is responsible for leading the firm’s employer covenant advisory services.
Lorant has been advising both trustee and corporate clients on funding defined benefit pension schemes for over twelve years, focusing on covenant assessments, corporate transactions, pension strategy, and negotiation support. He has assisted trustees with assessing the implications of corporate transactions on their pension schemes including large international acquisitions, demergers and corporate restructurings, reviewing the strength of the covenant in the context of actuarial valuations, monitoring relevant covenant risk indicators, negotiating contingent assets and implementing asset backed funding solutions.
Prior to moving to the pension advisory world, Lorant worked in corporate finance at one of the big four accountancy firms. By background, he is a Chartered Financial Analyst with a PhD in a numerical discipline and several years of corporate finance experience.
Joanne is responsible for the delivery of actuarial and consulting services from our London office. She advises a number of trustee boards, as well as working with clients undertaking design changes including; introducing salary sacrifice arrangements, scheme closures and changing contribution structures. Prior to working in the pensions industry she held a number of senior HR roles, including HR Director for a multi-national IT organisation where she also served as a trustee on three pension schemes. Joanne is now a Trustee of the National Pension Trust and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.
In her spare time she is an avid sports fan and is attempting to visit every racecourse in the UK.
Whilst Mark’s main role is as a Scheme Actuary, he also has experience as an investment consultant and a corporate advisor, so is well suited to considering integrated approaches to pension schemes’ objectives. Mark speaks regularly at seminars and trustee training days, and heads up XPS Pensions Group’s company accounting committee.
A husband and a dad, Mark enjoys most sports and spend many pointless hours (at least according to his wife) following Tottenham Hotspur. Although he lives in the delightful city of Birmingham, Mark feels most at home in the countryside having grown up in North Devon by the sea.
Douglas has been providing advice to trustees and sponsors of pension schemes for over 20 years. He strongly believes that actuarial advice can be delivered in a clear, understandable way to help clients through complicated issues. He is a member of XPS’s longevity services group and is heavily involved in business development.
Douglas played rugby for London Scottish and likes to take his children to watch the games, so he can pretend that he was better than he was!
John is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group. He is a Scheme Actuary with c. 30 years' experience and advises Trustee and Corporate clients, including a number in the not-for-profit sector. John also specialises in providing advice in relation to the pension issues that arise when public sector staff are transferred out to the private sector as a result of an outsourcing or similar exercise. He therefore has extensive knowledge of the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS), the Principal Civil Service Pension Scheme (PCSPS) and the NHS Pension Scheme (NHSPS).
John co-chairs the XPS Professionalism Committee which has responsibility for setting, monitoring and maintaining professional standards across the Group.
Outside of work, John is a keen sailor and can often be found capsizing on the Thames at weekends!
Don is a Principal of our Newcastle Office and has worked in the pension industry for over 40 years.
He is Head of our Client Management Team for smaller schemes and is an experienced Relationship Manager, having looked after a variety of both DB and DC schemes. He managed both schemes whilst in Scotland when working for 18 years with Standard Life and also in the North East of England, where he worked for Brewin Dolphin for a further 18 years before acquisition by Punter Southall in 2011 and more recently XPS Group.
Don has also worked as an Independent Trustee for a number of schemes for over 20 years, and fully recognises the complex issues that Trustees need to deal with. From this insight as an Independent Trustee in the past, he can often anticipate and assist Trustees in the decision making process.
Once a keen footballer he is now just a staunch supporter of Newcastle United as well as a regular visitor to the Cheltenham Festival so needs to keep working to finance this! Married with three grown up daughters is also a factor.
Liz is an experienced Scheme Actuary and pensions consultant advising trustees on all aspects of UK private pension provision, both final salary and money purchase. She is highly skilled at leading her actuarial team to provide full support to trustees.
Liz is Head of Actuarial Tools, responsible for developing and sharing our technology to enable us to deliver advice to our clients in an efficient and engaging manner. As part of our Technical Committee, she is also responsible for our ongoing research into developments in scheme funding and longevity trends, which enables us to bring innovative ideas to our clients.
In her spare time, Liz likes to complete a 1 mile swim as often as she can.
Chris Leads our IT Function and is responsible for developing and delivering XPS Group’s IT strategy which supports the overall growth strategy. Chris is also responsible for development of system developments that support our client solutions. Information Security is a further key area of responsibility and he continually monitors the threat landscape and ensures best practice across the group’s Information security approach.
Chris is a Prince2 Practitioner, a Certified SCRUM Product Owner, a Certified SCRUM Master and also has ITIL certification.
Chris is a keen skier and golfer and follower of Bath Rugby in the winter and Somerset Cricket in the Summer.
James is an actuary based in our London office. He sits within our specialist Transactions team, advising both listed corporates and private equity clients in relation to pension issues within corporate deals. James has a wealth of experience advising corporates on a range of pension’s issues, such as; negotiating actuarial valuations; assisting with investment strategy and employer covenant issues; and working to manage and reduce financial risk arising from defined benefit pension obligations.
In his spare time, James is currently attempting to learn the guitar.
Jonathan is a qualified actuary with extensive experience of advising both companies and trustees on funding, risk management and pension strategies.
He enjoys working collaboratively with other advisors to provide pragmatic, outcome-focussed advice. He also enjoys the challenge of communicating complex pensions’ issues clearly and concisely. Having previously been authorised to provide investment advice, Jonathan has a very good understanding of investment issues, and always ensures his clients receive joint advice across funding and investment.
In Jonathan's spare time he enjoys a bit of gardening and visiting the many architectural gems in Scotland and beyond. Having retired as coach to a local youth football team, he attempts to keep fit by playing tennis when the weather permits.
Wayne heads up our transactions team and is committed to helping our clients reach fair, good value pension outcomes in deals or restructuring situations.
Wayne also provides ongoing advice to companies, helping them manage cost and risk in their pension schemes. Having helped companies and trustees work together to set strategy - and seen the consequences when this breaks down - he is passionate about finding ways for parties to work collaboratively to achieve good outcomes.
Wayne has commented extensively in the press on the changing nature of how people are accessing their pensions and has led our research in this area.
Wayne has lived in London for 20 years but tries to escape back to South Africa when he can. Along with seeing family there, it is to spend a little more time hiking or on safari.
Adam has been providing pensions advice to both trustees and sponsoring employers for over 20 years. His main client role is as a Scheme Actuary to a wide range of trustee clients.
Adam is currently appointed as Scheme Actuary to 10 clients whose schemes range in size from around £50m to in excess of £1bn. They include UK schemes of 2 significant US organisations, a major provider in UK private health sector, a plc in the construction sector and the major UK union organisation.
Adam's reputation has been built on clear, jargon-free ‘to the point’ advice which he delivers in a way that makes him easy to work with.
Aside from work, Adam is married with two children, is also a keen golfer, an ultra-marathon walker and has recently completed professional qualifications in wine.
Catherine is a Principal at XPS Administration. She is responsible for ensuring that business level risks are identified, escalated and monitored through to resolution and for ensuring that the administration business is compliant with legislative and regulatory requirements. Catherine started her working life as a Pensions Administrator and is now a Fellow of the Pensions Management Institute, giving her a deep understanding of the challenges and complexities that pension administrators face in their daily working life.Her specialist chosen subject is the world of data protection and she has been actively involved in training both employees and clients on the changes following the introduction of GDPR.
In her spare time Catherine enjoys the thrill of the open road, on her bicycle. Her favourite quote is “If you think compliance is expensive – try non-compliance.” Apparently her dream job would be selling ice-creams in a park on a sunny day!
Richard is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group, and sits on the Group’s Executive Committee. He is responsible for leading our pensions administration business. Richard has significant commercial experience, having been a director of a global management consultancy, and a policy official in HM Treasury.
In his spare time, Richard chairs two charities that promote the performing arts.
Danny is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group. He is responsible for providing actuarial and investment advice to 15 clients, from those with fewer than £10m to over £1bn in assets. Danny is especially passionate about ensuring consistency between investment and funding approaches adopted by schemes, especially those entering the final stages of their journey to self-sufficiency. Danny has been Head of the London office and Head of Investment Consulting during his career, bringing enormous experience to the challenges of making sense of pensions.
In his spare time, Danny loves a sociable game of poker, but don’t try to bluff him!
Nick is a Scheme Actuary and corporate pension’s adviser with clients ranging in size from £10m to over £1bn. In addition to supporting on the day to day running of schemes, Nick focuses on the longer term; ensuring risks are understood and managed so that objectives can be achieved. He is passionate about building strong relationships and providing a service that focuses on the best outcomes for clients and their members.
Nick regularly speaks at our seminars and in any spare time his two children give him, he enjoys playing golf and walking in the country.
Rob is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group. He is Scheme Actuary to a number of schemes with assets ranging from £5m to £1bn. Rob also acts as corporate adviser and investment adviser for a range of clients. He heads up the XPS research committees on integrated risk management and pension scheme governance, with a focus on helping companies and trustees understand and manage their pension risks.
In his spare time Rob plays in a local squash league, with a playing style best described as ‘headless chicken’.
David is a Managing Director of XPS Administration and has over 20 years' experience within the pensions administration sector, with notable successes in the delivery of services and the introduction of pension's administration systems. David has played a key role in developing the business, which now administers pensions for over 800,000 pension scheme members from offices across the UK.
Charlotte is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group. She is responsible for all Corporate Communications, this includes Investor relations and the production of the Annual Report and the interim results. She also leads on press coverage at times of corporate reporting and wider corporate activity. Additionally she is developing the Corporate and Social Responsibility strategy and the communication of the firm’s activities in these areas.
Charlotte is also responsible for all aspects of internal communications providing staff with regular, meaningful and consistent information, maintaining high employee engagement and a workforce that is proud of XPS and what the business stands for.
In her spare time she plays tennis and is planning her next escape – this time she wants to travel in luxury on the Blue Train in South Africa.
Lisa is a Principal and Scheme Actuary at XPS Group. She provides advice on all types of pension matters for Trustees and Corporates; and prides herself on her ‘no jargon’ and direct approach to helping stakeholders through the minefield of pensions legislation. She also speaks at client seminars and industry events. In her spare time, she stills tries to do a bit of ice skating and wanted to be a professional ice dancer before deciding actuarial was more interesting.
Emma is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group and heads up the Guildford office. She has over 30 years’ experience of advising trustees of schemes ranging in asset size from around £25m to over £500m, with sponsors including family-owned businesses, private equity backed and quoted companies. Emma believes there is no such thing as a stupid question and is particularly skilled at explaining complex material clearly and comprehensively. She builds strong links with all the scheme’s stakeholders, believing a collaborative approach ultimately delivers the best outcome for members.
In her spare time she is a dog whisperer and gardener.
Alan provides pensions advice to a range of XPS clients from the Wokingham office where he leads the actuarial team. He advises both trustees and employers on all matters relating to pension schemes including design, funding and investment strategy. Alan has a wide range of clients, including small arrangements to schemes with many thousands of members.
Alan has built strong relationships with his clients, bringing scheme trustees and employers together to help maximise the chance of successfully reaching their agreed funding aim. He has specialist knowledge of the bulk annuity market having led Punter Southall’s bulk annuity team during 2016 and has worked very closely with the Pension Protection Fund (PPF), advising it on changes to improve its processes and introducing efficiencies through the PPF’s Assess & Pay programme. He is also very familiar with the requirements of scheme transfer and wind-up.
Alan also has a number of clients in the charity and non-profit sector, and jointly head our Charity and Non-Profit team.
When he's not at work he provides a taxi service to his three children, enjoys playing the guitar, listening to live music and fly fishing for trout.
Simeon leads our thinking on journey planning and asset allocation, along with being responsible for research across the investment team.
Simeon is an experienced investment specialist with 17 years’ experience, advising trustee and corporate clients on a full range of investment related matters, with a particular emphasis towards strategy and risk management.
Simeon is frequently quoted in the press on matters relating to investment opportunities and topical debate; and is well known for his inventive analogies and love of flip charts.
Nigel has been providing pensions advice to both trustees and sponsoring employers for over 30 years having led the regional practices for two actuarial, investment and administration consultancies over the last 20 years.
His experience covers a wide range of pensions and investment consulting work for Defined Benefit, Defined Contribution schemes, trustees and sponsors. This includes; benefit; funding; investment strategy and scheme closure projects; pension aspects of corporate transactions; liability management exercises; scheme wind-ups; buy in and buy out projects and member communications.
Nigel has a reputation amongst his clients of having the ability to communicate complex scenarios in a simple, jargon-free, and understandable way.
As well as leading the Birmingham Office, he is also heavily involved in marketing and business development, while also being a regular speaker or Chair at XPS events.
Nigel is a husband, father to 3 boys, occasional (good) golfer, gym goer, email addict, lover of all things Birmingham.
William is a pragmatic and collaborative pension’s actuary with over 17 years' experience, who looks to build strong open relationships with clients. He recognises that no one answer fits all, and always seeks to give the advice that will best suit each client.
William has a wide range of specialist skills, advising both trustees and corporates, as well working with the PPF to deliver schemes into the Financial Assistance Scheme. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Actuaries and a Scheme Actuary to eight defined benefit (some with defined contribution elements) pension schemes.
William has always taken an interest in investment matters and supported colleagues on linking assets and liabilities as well as providing investment advice. Since 2012 he has been registered as an FCA Approved Person and now provides investment advice to seven clients through the FCA regulated advisory firm.
In his spare time, William tries to spend as much time as possible with his family, which these days generally turns into a weekend of following his children around different sporting venues. This has resulted in him joining the executive team of his local scout group as treasurer, although the overnight stay at Beaver camp was not what he was expecting!
Craig is a Principal at XPS Pensions Group and has over 20 years' experience within the pensions industry. Craig advises trustee and corporate clients ranging from £10m in asset size to over £500m; across various industries and business sectors (including several within the charity and not for profit sector).
As well as being an experienced Scheme Actuary, Craig also has extensive experience of helping sponsors to determine and manage the right level of risk for their funding, investment and member option strategies. He has been a regular presenter at seminars on this topic.
Craig is a keen sports fan and is a regular attendee at Wolves games (along with his 3 boys – youngest daughter to follow when old enough!). At university, the choice of career was between PE teacher and actuary – the latter just won out!
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