LFP148 – Special Episode! The Lord Mayor Of London: The City, Promoting US-UK Fintech Ties & Regional Fintech

Do you known that William Russell’s – the 692nd Lord Mayor of London – first trip was to the US to promote Fintech and that he is perhaps the first Lord Mayor of London to have visited all the regions and is well up-to-speed on regional Fintech? No me neither before we spoke. However his mayoral theme is “Global UK – Trade, Innovation and Culture” which is super-important in this Brexited year.

What actually isΒ The City – a phrase we all use? What is the Lord Mayor and what is his role?

How does the geographic district relate to FS as a whole – much of which is in Canary Wharf and spread around the UK?

How does the CIty’s soft power work and what have some Fintech’s already found out about the influence it can bring? What is US investors’ attitude to UK Fintech at present?

Also a small prize for spotting a splendid ancient Clock chiming away in the background of this recording in Mansion House πŸ™‚

All these topics and more are discussed in this episode including:

  • within the City (qua administrative region) the Lord Mayor is only outranked by the Queen
  • as well as the FS angle it owns 10,000 acres of public spaces eg Hampstead Heath
  • it is probably the oldest continuous local government in the world, predating the Norma invasion of 1066
  • the on balance huge success of The City over a thousand years as despite everything – war, plague, fire – the City is the premier FS location in the world
  • the change from trading real goods to FS over the centuries
  • the Square Mile is actually a rectangle and not a square mile but a square 1.12 miles πŸ™‚
  • the pantomime Dick Whittington – based on the real Richard Whittington who was the Lord Mayor four times in the 14thC
  • Lord Mayor’s terms are now for one year
  • William is the 5th member of his family to be a Lord Mayor since 1913
  • William’s career – from City FS, international and co-founding a school in Knightsbridge
  • the path that led him to becoming the Lord Mayor
  • the CIty’s governance being unique but very successful
  • the origins of insurance in the Great Fire of London
  • the Lord Mayor’s optimism post-Brexit
  • how Canary Wharf impacted the City
  • the Lord Mayor is the Ambassador for Financial and Professional Services for the whole of the UK
  • FS & Professional Services employs 2.3 million people in the UK – two-thirds of whom are outside The City’s geographical boundaries
  • eg the largest private sector employer in Dorset is JP Morgan (!)
  • Edinburgh is the 2nd largest Financial area outside London esp in asset management
  • “I am probably the first Lord Mayor that will go to every one of the regions.”
  • William has already visited Leeds, Manchester, Belfast, Birmingham and Edinburgh – will visit Cardiff, Durham and Newcastle in coming months
  • the impact of London’s excess success on the regions – freeports and “laptop lifestyle” and how they will impact
  • Leeds as an example of how regional business is growing around the university and five headquarters of retail banks
  • Ratesetter’s office is in Bishopsgate but they also have a large office in Leicester
  • Northern Ireland Fintech
  • Over 40% of FS employees in London are from outside the UK
  • The Lord Mayor’s first overseas trip promoting Fintech links with San Francisco institutional investors/VCs
  • the challenges of funding A, B, C rounds
  • “[On the West Coast] they are fascinated with Fintech”
  • how US investors look at VC investment differently
  • US Fintech Robinhood
  • “Soft convening power”
  • what Fintechs say about how this works in terms of opening doors
  • Fintech weeks are now joined up in London rather than competing
  • Hayek and the price mechanism and Neil Monnery “The Architect of Prosperity” – on Treasury Secretary Cowperthwaite’s huge success with Free Market orientated policies
  • The Lord Mayor’sΒ hot tip for Fintech – green finance – reporting, risk assessment and return

And much much more πŸ™‚

Share and enjoy!