60-second interview: Charles Pike, consultant at Forsters
Tell me about your role at Forsters.
I am a consultant, acting for private clients and families in their long-term planning.
How has the private client industry changed?
The increase in regulation has been the main change. This has frequently been driven by the false assumption, fuelled by some in the media, that all clients with trust or corporate structures for holding and investing their wealth must be involved in tax evasion or some other illicit activity.
Tell us about some interesting client instructions.
Helping a high-profile sportsman to undertake charitable projects during his playing career, which he would then be able to continue and build on once his playing days were over.
Will the UK benefit from Brexit?
Yes, provided we are able to show that Brexit presents an opportunity more than a threat. For example, investing in the UK post-Brexit should benefit everyone.
What are the main challenges for your clients?
Clients can face a barrage of questions from the regulatory authorities even when they are fully compliant. The challenge for clients is to accept that regulation is necessary to prevent the financial excesses of the past. My job is to help them under the process.
Tell me about an achievement you are most proud of?
I advise a number of charities, and to watch a project on which you have advised from the very outset reach a successful conclusion is particularly satisfying.
What trends are you seeing?
Traditional portfolio management of shares is being challenged by the ability of private investors to buy, hold and sell shares on their own initiative through low-cost platforms. So the trend is towards efficiency and cost-effectiveness.
How do you relax in your free time?
As a lifelong Chelsea supporter I watch them as often as I can. I also enjoy watching cricket. I play golf, but too infrequently to play well.