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Former chancellor Lord Hammond to join £1bn fintech fund

Lord Hammond has held advisory roles at both crypto firm Copper and OakNorth Bank since leaving Parliament.

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Philip Hammond/Raul Mee/CC BY 2.0.

Lord Philip Hammond, the former chancellor, is set to join a new fund to accelerate the expansion of UK fintechs, according to reports.

He has been lined up to serve on the advisory board for the new venture, provisionally named the Fintech Growth Fund, Sky Newsreported.

The former chancellor is apparently set to be one of several big-name figures backing the new £1bn fund, which sources said would seek to raise capital from institutional investors and be independent from the government.

The establishment of the Fintech Growth Fund was one of the recommendations laid out in the Kalifa Review by former Worldpay CEO Sir Ron Kalifa last year.

The report suggested that the UK’s pension posts could be a potential source for fintech funding, with Kalifa pointing to the £6 trillion in private pension schemes in the UK.

According to the report, a small amount of this money could be “diverted to high growth technology opportunities like fintech”.

Lord Hammond, who was chancellor under Theresa May from 2016 to 2019, has had involvement with a number of fintech and crypto businesses since his time as a minister.

He took on an adviser role at crypto startup Copper in October and joined startup lender OakNorth Bank’s advisory board in 2020.

Sky News reports that Barclays,London Stock Exchange Group and Mastercard are among City stalwarts asked to provide seed funding to the Fintech Growth Fund.

Former government fintech ambassador Al Lukies and FinTech Alliance boss Phil Vidler are also expected to play a role in the fund, according to the report.

The fund is expected to invest in companies looking for capital beyond their Series B stage and could be announced as soon as this autumn, insiders said.

According to the Kalifa Review, the funds to fill this gap could “act as the catalyst in developing a world-leading ecosystem”.

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