Senior Regulatory Intelligence Expert, Thomson Reuters
Mr Ashley Kovas has been involved in financial services regulation since the implementation of the Financial Services Act 1986, at which time he was at the Department of Trade and Industry. Subsequently he worked for several fund management companies before joining the FSA in 2000 where he worked on both wholesale and retail policy issues. His last role at the FSA was as Manager of the Collective Investment Schemes Policy Team where he was responsible for almost all aspects of the COLL Sourcebook. He also took an active role as a member of the CESR (now ESMA) Investment Management Expert Group, as well as representing the FSA at IOSCO Standing Committee 5 (Investment Management).
After eight years at the FSA, Mr Ashley became Head of Group Compliance (Funds) in the Prudential PLC Group Compliance Department. After a period as Director of Strategy for the Solicitors Regulation Authority, Mr Ashley was Head of Group Compliance Policy at the Royal Bank of Scotland where he introduced a suite of Conduct Risk Policies effective across the RBS Group.
Mr Ashley is now a Senior Regulatory Intelligence Expert at Thomson Reuters where he analyses and writes on up-coming regulatory change. He also works as an independent regulatory consultant.
Mr Ashley holds Bachelors and Masters degrees in Law from the University of London. He is a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Securities and Investment (CISI) and a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute. He assists the CISI in reviewing many of its course texts and examination questions. He is the author of Understanding the Financial Conduct Authority: a guide for senior managers, available from www.troubador.co.uk.
Acting Deputy Director General, DG FISMA, European Commission
Mr John Berrigan is currently the Director for Financial system surveillance and crisis management in DG FISMA of the European Commission. This Directorate focuses on analysis of financial-sector developments in the EU and globally and surveillance of national financial systems within the EU. In addition, the Directorate is responsible for macro-prudential policies at both EU and national levels and for Commission relations with the European Systemic Risk Board. The Directorate is also responsible for bank/non-bank resolution and for Commission relations with the newly-established Single Resolution Board.
Mr Berrigan has been a Commission official since the mid-1980s and has spent much of that time working on financial-sector issues first in DG ECFIN and now in DG FISMA. He has also worked on monetary policy and exchange-rate analysis in the context of preparations for the introduction of the euro in 1999. In the mid 1990s, he worked for several years with the International Monetary Fund. He was Commission Mission Chief for Portugal from July 2013 to November 2014 in the context of the recent economic assistance programme and has contributed to financial-sector aspects of the assistance programmes for other Member States.
Mr. Berrigan has a masters’ degree in economics from the University College Dublin. He is married with two children.
Jan Ronse Institute for Corporate and Financial Law, KU Leuven
Prof Dr Veerle Colaert is a financial law professor at KU Leuven University and co-director of the Jan Ronse Institute for Company and Financial Law. She teaches the courses of “Regulation of Financial Services in Europe” and “European Banking and Investment Services Law” and organises quarterly topical legal Clinics on European Financial Law. She has published numerous articles on different aspects of financial regulation and is a regular speaker at international legal conferences.
As a MiFID expert, Prof Dr Colaert has been an Insurance Committee advisor at the Belgian Financial Services and Markets Authority since October 2012.
Director, Economics and Policy, PwC
Mr Nick Forrest is a Director in PwC’s Economics practice, with a focus on economic and financial analysis for competition, regulation, valuation and strategy issues.
In recent years his main focus has been analysis of policy and regulatory responses to the financial crisis. He has led impact analyses of the Basel III capital and liquidity reforms and the proposed EU Bank Structural Reform regulation, as well as a broader study of the impact of regulation on capital markets liquidity.
Following the financial crisis, Mr Forrest was seconded for two years to the UK Department for Business, where his work included monitoring and policy analysis related to the restoration of bank lending.
Member of the European Parliament
Mr Othmar Karas is a Member of the European Parliament. He leads the delegation of the Austrian People's Party (OVP) and is vice-chair of the Group of the European People's Party (Christian Democrats; EPP-ED group). He is an active member of the Committee for Economic and Monetary Affairs and the Special Committee on Tax Rulings and Other Measures Similar in Nature or Effect. He is also a substitute of the Committee for Foreign Affairs, the Committee for the Internal Market and Consumer Protection as well as the Defence and Security Committee. Mr Karas chairs the Delegation to the EU-Russia Parliamentary Cooperation Committee. He is also president of Hilfswerk, one of the largest non-profit organisations in Austria. Between 2012 and 2014, he was cross-party elected Vice- President of the European Parliament. Prior to his first election to the European Parliament in 1999, he was a Member of the Austrian Parliament, Secretary-General of the OVP and deputy Secretary-General of UNIQA, a banking and insurance company.
Secretary General, Finance Watch
Mr Christophe Nijdam is Secretary General of Finance Watch. He began his career in 1979 at Credit Lyonnais (now Crédit Agricole) New York as a financial analyst and corporate banker. In 1983 he joined the headquarters of the CCF (now HSBC France) as co-head of interest rate and currency derivatives, before returning to the US as a capital markets director. In 1989, he became US General Manager for Crédit du Nord (now Société Generale Group) in New York.
Returning to France in the early 1990s, he decided to switch to the investor side by becoming a financial analyst. He also joined the team of Le Nouvel Economiste in 1992 as vice-chair of the board in charge of financial affairs. Mr Nijdam co-founded the independent equity research firm CAPITALACTION in 1994, where he was managing partner.
A lecturer at Sciences-Po Paris from 1998 to 2008, he still teaches in the corporate finance and capital markets Executive Masters’ programme.
Immediately prior to deciding to join Finance Watch, Mr Christophe Nijdam was a banking analyst at AlphaValue, where he worked since the firm was founded in 2008. He joined Finance Watch in January 2015.
Chief Executive Officer, FIA Europe
Mr Puleston Jones is CEO of FIA Europe, the European industry association for exchange traded and cleared derivatives relating to financial futures, swaps and commodities. FIA Europe provides coverage of the global derivatives markets through its affiliation with its peer associations FIA (in the US) and FIA Asia. Previously, he headed the European legal coverage for Futures and OTC Clearing for Barclays and was one of their lead lawyers dealing with regulatory change. The first fifteen years of his career as a solicitor were spent advising global investment banks on a wide range of structured finance and derivative transactions in OTC and securitized format, both in-house and at the international City law firm Simmons & Simmons.
He regularly speaks at conferences around the globe and writes on various subjects relating to regulatory change.
Managing Director and Deputy General Counsel, DTCC
Ms Ann Shuman is Managing Director & Deputy General Counsel of the Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC), which operates securities clearinghouses and the central securities depository serving the U.S. financial industry. DTCC also operates trade data repositories globally and provides a variety of other trade processing and data management services. Ms Shuman is responsible for managing the DTCC legal department’s core functions, including the company’s position on regulatory policy matters. Prior to joining DTCC in 2014, she was Managing Director & Deputy General Counsel for the Chicago mercantile Exchange Group (CME).
Ms Shuman holds a J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School and a B.A. from Trinity University.
Member of the European Parliament
Mr Peter Simon is a jurist from Mannheim and since 2009 he is member of the European Parliament. Since 2015 he is coordinator of S&D in the Special Committee on Tax Rulings and Other Measures Similar in Nature or Effect. In 2014 he was elected vicechair of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, where in times of sovereign debt crisis in the euro zone his economic and fiscal expertise is in demand. Additionally he was elected substitute in the Committee on Regional Development and member of the European Parliaments Delegation for relations with the Palestinian Legislative Council. Between 1995 and 2009 he gained large-scale communal experience in professional activities at the city of Mannheim, the Metropolregion Rhein-Neckar as well as at the Association of German Cities and the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Head of Unit B2 - Economic analysis and evaluation, DG FISMA, European Commission
Mr Martin Spolc is the Head of the Economic Analysis and Evaluation unit in the European Commission's Directorate-General for Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union, leading the team in charge of the comprehensive review of the EU regulatory framework for financial services. Prior to his current role, he was the Deputy Head of the Banking unit and the Assistant to the Director General advising him on key projects in the area of financial services since the financial crisis. Before joining the Commission, he worked at the risk management consultancy. He is the holder of the CFA and FRM designations and member of the CFA Institute and Global Association of Risk Professionals.
Member of the Secretariat, Secretary of the Standing Committee on Standards Implementation, FSB - Financial Stability Board
Mr Constantinos (Costas) Stephanou is a member of the Secretariat of the Financial Stability Board (FSB), and is the Secretary of the FSB Standing Committee on Standards Implementation (SCSI) that oversees the FSB’s implementation monitoring program. In that capacity, he has led the development of the FSB framework for monitoring the implementation of G20 financial reforms; participated in FSB country and thematic peer reviews in areas such as macroprudential policy frameworks, resolution regimes and shadow banking; coordinated the process and led the write-up of various FSB reports on the effects of regulatory reforms on emerging market and developing economies. Mr Stephanou is currently supporting the preparation of the annual FSB report to the G20 on the implementation and effects of reforms. He previously worked as a Senior Financial Economist at the World Bank, where he participated in financial sector assessments and consulted with national authorities on banking regulation and supervision, risk management, access to finance, free trade agreements and financial services, and competition policy. He is also the author of a number of papers on these issues. Prior to joining the World Bank, Mr Stephanou worked as a risk management consultant for Oliver Wyman and as Treasury Risk Manager and Head of Planning for an HSBC affiliate in Greece. He holds degrees in Economics and Public Policy from the universities of Cambridge and Harvard respectively.
Group Chief Executive, Legal & General
Mr Nigel Wilson was appointed Group Chief Executive in 2012 having joined as Group Chief Financial Officer in 2009.
He was until 2012 Senior Independent Director (SID) of The Capita Group Plc and was SID/Chairman of Halfords Group Plc until 2011.
Mr Wilson’s previous appointments include McKinsey & Co (where clients included BP, Citibank, Cadbury’s, Santander, Kingfisher, Courtaulds, Whitbread and Globe Investment Trust). Group Commercial Director of Dixons Group Plc, Managing Director of Stanhope Properties Plc, Chief Executive, Corporate, Guinness Peat Aviation (G.P.A.), Managing Director, Viridian Capital. Deputy Chief Executive and Chief Financial Officer UBM.
He was appointed to the Prime Ministers Business Advisory Group in 2015.
Mr Wilson’s qualifications include a PhD from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he was a Kennedy Scholar, and a recipient of the Alfred P Sloan research scholarship. He also worked at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER). BA (1st class) and MA University of Essex. Attended Stephenson Way School, Newton Aycliffe and Ferryhill Grammar School.
Mr Wilson has won numerous Athletics championships including the 800m British Masters. He was also City AM “Business Personality of the Year” in 2014.
He is married with five daughters.