Brett Bayliss


Soham Village College followed by a degree in Economics and Politics at Warwick University

Married with daughter and son graduating this year

2006 following 20 years at UBS/Laing & Cruickshank

At present, anything by Adele

Running and CrossFit – the perfect antidote to being desk bound!

The annual tax return

I have always admired the American sprinter Michael Johnson for his talent, self-belief and broad range of succes


As a member of the management committee can you give us a sense of where the business is at today?

Thanks to the quality of the people at JM Finn, I am delighted to say that the firm is in rude health with funds under management at their highest levels in our history, solid inflows (mainly from client referrals) and capital levels twice those required by our regulator. Our stable ownership and collegiate atmosphere has been highly successful in attracting likeminded investment managers over the years. We are not, however, looking to grow for growth’s sake with our objective to be the best rather than biggest. We value our direct relationship with clients as much as our clients do and continue to look for ways to enhance our service with Wealth Planning and our award winning portal as recent examples.

From a management perspective what are the issues that keep you awake at night?

As far as the firm itself is concerned, I am pleased to say very little! Externally, regulatory changes following MiFID II caused an incredible amount of work but the efforts of the firm across the board meant we are able to meet the challenges it presents. My biggest concern at present is the increasing amount of attempted fraud in the financial sector but I am grateful that we have an excellent IT team looking after our cyber security, diligent people in investment administration and above all, a strong personal relationship with our clients - there is no better safeguard.

Having added a new branch office in 2019 what else is in store for the regional network?

Much of our growth in recent years has been in the regions with a third of the firm’s assets (£3.4 billion) now managed from the branches. I have always appreciated the ability to offer the advantages of a London firm at a local level meaning we can truly become part of the community, supporting local events and charities. We have recently opened an excellent office in Winchester having relocated Cardiff previously whilst Bristol will shortly move to new offices in the heart of the city. Leeds has gone from strength to strength with Lucy Coutts named Wealth Manager of the Year by the prestigious COLWMA. Clients can now see wealth planners in our branches, strengthening our offering still further.

How does the firm react to potential business outages, such as the key man risk from the coronavirus?

Operational resilience is a major topic at the moment and we are committed to ensuring that our service to clients would remain as unaffected as possible by any potential significant issue arising, either internally or externally. We have a designated disaster recovery centre in Bury St Edmunds and as one might expect, we have an emergency management team dedicated to covering any eventuality. Our priority, should anything untoward occur, would be to maintain our ability to trade and keep open communications with clients, something our marketing department places great emphasis upon. Again, this is where our personal relationships with clients stands us in excellent stead.

Understanding Finance

Helping clients understand what we do is key to building relationships. To explain some of the industry jargon that creeps into our world, we’ve pulled together a section of our site to help.

Managing your wealth

Managing your wealth

Also in this issue

We will of course find out more about the government’s spending plans during the budget.

There is not a more formidable e-commerce business than Amazon.

Tobacco companies have historically shown themselves capable of withstanding everything regulators have thrown at them.

Spring Issue Thirty