Simon is the CEO and co-founder of Octopus Group, and winner of the 2017 EY UK Entrepreneur of the Year Award. Octopus is now one of the UK’s fastest growing companies and is transforming markets and customer expectations by building companies with one purpose – the relentless pursuit of ‘better’. Simon and co-founder Chris Hulatt founded their first business Octopus Investments in 2000, motivated by a desire to change the world of investments for the better by offering a straight-talking approach, exceptional customer service, and a range of products that do what they say they will. Driven by the belief that in business, it’s not just what you do, but how you do it. Octopus is on a mission to be in every home in the UK by 2030. Octopus Energy, Octopus Healthcare, Octopus Investments, Octopus Labs, Octopus Property and Octopus Ventures are all part of Octopus Group. octopusgroup.com Before founding Octopus, Simon spent two years working at Mercury Asset Management. He graduated with a first class MA in Modern Languages from St. Andrews University and is a Chartered Financial Analyst.
Simon used the metaphor that going to a financial advisor is similar to going to a GP. “People need the reassurance of a professional because people don’t trust themselves when it comes to investing”.
“Customers appreciate good financial planning over questionable advisors offering FTSE.”
Something the financial services industry is lacking is empathy because it is very male driven, Simon said.
He also mentioned how the “financial advisory market is not efficient, but it is still making money” and therefore is replaceable.