Philip Hammond joins OakNorth’s Advisory Board

By Daniel Lanyon on Monday 27 January 2020

Digital Banking

The former chancellor will help the bullish-on-Brexit founders work with the fast-growing fintech's global clients as well as senior policymakers around the world.

Philip Hammond joins OakNorth’s Advisory Board
Image source: UK Gov

Phillip Hammond, former Chancellor of the Exchequer, has joined Oaknorth’s advisory board. 

In his role, OakNorth says, he will work with its global clients as well as senior policymakers around the world, to “redefine” lending to small and medium-sized businesses.

As chancellor Hammond developed a reputation for being an astute and steely operator, helping the UK public finances to hit a record surplus in February. He was also one of 21 Conservative MPs to lose the Whip after defying party orders and adding his clout to the plan to allow MPs powers to block a no-deal Brexit. He was also widely seen as sympathetic to the remain side and at odds with Boris Johnson's strategy.

Oaknorth’s co-founders meanwhile Joel Perlman and Rishi Khosla have both expressed bullish attitudes towards Brexit in the past saying they saw it as an opportunity.

Hammond, who stepped down at the last election after a very public fallout with Prime Minister Boris Johnson over the Brexit process, was a late but dedicated fintech enthusiast as chancellor also.  He oversaw the launch of the government’s first Fintech Sector Strategy, appointed Fintech Regional Envoys and establishing Fintech Bridges with Australia, China and South Korea.

Khosla said: “We set up OakNorth because of the challenges we experienced in securing finance from commercial banks when trying to scale our first business – challenges that Philip himself experienced as an SME housebuilder. During his time as Chancellor, Philip proactively advocated for small and medium-sized businesses and the fintech sector – two areas that have clear synergies with OakNorth. He brings both an international perspective, having worked with Finance Ministers across the globe, as well as a deep understanding of the British economy. He will spend time with global clients and policymakers, as well as advising us on the continued expansion of our UK loan book. We’re delighted that he’s joined us and look forward to working together to change commercial banking globally, so it can truly address the financing requirements of small and medium-sized business.”

Philip Hammond, former Chancellor of the Exchequer and Independent Adviser at OakNorth, continued: “I am delighted to be joining OakNorth's Advisory Board at such an exciting point in the Company's history. OakNorth is the flagship of the UK's vital and fast-growing fintech sector - attracting record-levels of investment and generating sustainable profits while bringing much-needed change to an underserved area of the banking market. Small and medium-sized businesses are the lifeblood of the British economy and communities globally. The development by OakNorth of a platform to deliver cost-effective lending to them is a major boost to the potential of not only the British economy, but economies worldwide. I look forward to being part of both OakNorth's growth story in the UK and its expansion into international markets, licensing its platform to partners across the globe."

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