Despite the tougher times many of our readers have experienced, as a group this year they dug in to support a charity that helps people help themselves. This page is a tribute to just some of those in the City who have made their mark on the charitable sector. Next year we are keen to hear from others we may have missed. Most do not seek publicity but their efforts have been traced in the course of putting together this supplement. The wonderful work that is done in the City in the name of charity is reported almost daily in City A.M.’s Capitalist column.
ARPAD BUSSON Hedge funds
Hedge fund millionaires, entrepreneurs and celebrities flock to Arpad Busson’s annual gala dinner in honour of his children’s charity ARK.
Busson, renowned for running the EIM hedge fund and his on-off relationship with Uma Thurman, uses the charity to improve health in sub-Saharan Africa, education in the UK, US and India, and child protection in Eastern Europe. The fund has raised more than £150m since being set up in 2002 and has leveraged another £250m in support from governments. Busson was until 2005 involved with Australian supermodel Elle Macpherson, with whom he had two sons.
BART BECHT Consumer
Bart Becht, the former chief executive of Reckitt Benckiser, has amassed a huge fortune through the stellar performance of the firm, which makes Cillit Bank cleaners and Nurofen painkillers. He is also one of Britain’s biggest charitable donors, however, giving almost £110m of Reckitt shares to charitable trust in 2009, after he collected more than £90m on the back of rising stock options.
The Dutchman announced his departure from the firm in April and a few months later revealed plans to join the board of ICON Aircraft, an American sports plane company in which he recently became a key investor.
DAVID HARDING Hedge funds
Star trader David Harding has built a fortune from Winton Capital, which uses scientific research to spot patterns in market behaviour.
Last year the Cambridge natural sciences graduate donated £20m to create a green energy research centre at his alma mater. Reported to be the City’s highest earner in 2010, Harding directed the money to the Cambridge’s Cavendish Laboratory to fund investigation into energy-saving materials and energy storage.
He was previously the H in the AHL “black box” trading programme sold to Man Group.
He left in 1997 to form Winton.
JON MOULTON Private equity
Jon Moulton is known as the godfather of private equity and this week announced plans to raise up to £200m to invest in struggling companies through Better Capital Fund II.
The former Alchemy chief has given to areas of medicine such as stem cell research and is a trustee of the UK Stem Cell Foundation, which seeks to “speed up” the development of the technology for use in tackling degenerative conditions such as multiple sclerosis. Moulton has also set up his own charitable foundation, which has funded short clinical trials. His donations stretch back over many years, and come to £4.3m this year.
LORD ROTHSCHILD Banking and investments
Lord Rothschild is patriarch of the European banking dynasty in Britain, but left NM Rothschild & Sons more than two decades ago.
Since then he has co-founded companies in money management, insurance and investment including Global Asset Management and St James’s Place Capital. Waddesdon Manor, the former family home built at the end of the nineteenth century, is now run by a family charitable trust chaired by the Lord Rothschild. His recent donations are estimated at £46.8m. Earlier this year Rothschild’s RIT Capital Partners set up Renshaw Bay, an asset management and hedge fund venture with former JP Morgan executive Bill Winters.
MICHAEL HINTZE Hedge funds
Michael Hintze, the Australian who founded hedge fund CQS in 1999, is a regular giver to the arts, supporting institutions including the Old Vic, the Victoria & Albert Museum and Wandsworth Museum. The former head of equity trading at Goldman Sachs also donated £2m to the National Gallery in January.
He is understood to have donated £5m in total this year and about £21m over the last six years.
Hintze has become a star manager through his work at CQS, which took a massive short position on Bradford & Bingley at the time of the financial crisis. He is one of the most prominent supporters of the Conservative Party.
MICHAEL SPENCER Broking
ICAP’s annual pre-Christmas charity day, which has attracted the likes of Frank Bruno and the Duchess of Cornwall over the years, has become a fixture in the City calendar.
Chief executive Michael Spencer has been at the heart of the day’s success, helping the inter-dealer broker, in which he has a significant stake, raise millions.
This year’s charity trading day rang up £12.75m for good causes, hailed by Spencer as an “incredible achievement in these difficult times”.
Spencer has also been prominent in opposing the varying plans for a Tobin tax on European transactions.
SIR NIGEL DOUGHTY Private equity
Nigel Doughty and Richard Hanson set up a private equity firm in 1984 that has gone on to become one of the biggest private equity and fund management firms in Europe. Doughty – now Sir Nigel – was until October the chairman of Nottingham Forest FC.
Nottingham-born Doughty is a committed philanthropist, having contributed heavily to the NSPCC as well as establishing the Doughty Hanson Charitable Foundation, which fights poverty, disability and homelessness and promotes healthcare and education.
He also set up the Doughty Family Foundation with his wife, Lucy. His recent donations have been estimated at £3.8m.
SIMON BORROWS M&A; private equity
Simon Borrows is one of the City’s best-known rainmakers after a career advising some of Britain’s largest companies, including G4S, Tesco, Informa, Inchcape and National Express.
In July he announced plans to join 3i, Britain’s oldest private equity house, as chief investment officer.
He previously ran Greenhill and was credited with turning it from a small American investment bank to a major force in European deals.
He has contributed heavily to Britain’s National Theatre, where he sits on an advisory board and his recent donations have been estimated at £4m.
LORD FINK Hedge funds
Stanley Fink joined Man Group in 1987 and over 21 years helped build it into the largest listed hedge fund in the world, rising to chief executive and deputy chairman.
He has gone on to run hedge fund International Standard Asset Management and is treasurer of the Conservative Party. Fink was ennobled earlier this year and is currently a trustee and director of Absolute Return for Kids (ARK), where he was chairman from 2009-2010, and chairman of governors for Burlington Danes Academy, which he sponsored through ARK. His donations in recent yeares total £33.1m.