60 second interview with Mark Pearce, Gateley

Date: 10 Feb 2020


Citywealth spoke to Mark Pearce, partner in Gateley’s private wealth team, about clients’ concerns for privacy, mental health and doing what you love.

Tell me about your role.

I am a partner in Gateley’s Private Wealth team. What that means is that I advise wealthy people, usually with international connections, on various aspects of their personal wealth. This can include where to structure their assets, how to protect wealth in the event of family disharmony or, occasionally, on the value of dognap insurance (yes, this really is a thing).

Walk us through your daily routine.

  • 5:30-6:00 Prayer and meditation
  • 6:15-7:15 Survive the gym
  • 7:15-8:00 Survive the onslaught of two over-energised children
  • 8:00-18:00 Survive whatever the working day throws at me (sometimes literally)
  • 18:00‚Äì19:30 Try to be home for story time (we have just started Harry Potter 3!)
  • 19:30‚Äì22:00 Cook dinner, try and stay awake!
  • 22:00 My phone switches itself off automatically (as does my brain)

Tell us about a recent client instruction.

I was recently instructed by a client whose father had invested in a number of ventures in the 1980’s. The investments had not been well structured and money was now held through various entities in numerous jurisdictions. Like many clients, our client wanted to simplify everything, make sure the correct taxes had been paid and be free to use the money as he wished.

What is the most challenging issue your clients are facing currently, and how are you helping your clients to overcome it?

The major issue for clients is how to keep their affairs private. There are many reasons why clients may want to keep their affairs private, including personal safety, business rivalry, political pressure etc. Clients need to consider more carefully than ever which jurisdictions to hold their assets and structure their businesses as transparency rules and economic substance legislation mean that some jurisdictions may no longer meet a client’s needs.

What is your proudest professional achievement to date?

Writing an article on my mental health, which encouraged a number of other members of the firm to come forward with their own concerns. This allowed people to adjust their working life to better suit their needs and circumstances.

What do you consider to be the most important attributes for a leader?

Empathy, which is why I can’t be a team leader. A good leader must first understand their team in order to work out how to get the most out of them without breaking them. As I have ASD I lack the ability to empathise and tend to expect everyone to be like me and get confused when they are not.

Who do you most admire and why?

Honestly, my wife for putting up with me (and for working in the sometimes horrific field of community paediatrics, I never win the “bad day‚Äù competition)

Where was the last place you travelled to for work or pleasure?

Euro Disney, I question whether this actually qualifies as pleasure so might be better placed under the ‘hard work’ category!

If you weren’t in the wealth management industry, what else might you be doing?

Before committing my life (and soul?) to the law, I nearly joined MI5

How do you relax after a long day?

I like to cook. I am, what you might describe as, experimental. Some things work well, sausages in coconut milk does not!

Best piece of advice for Generation Z?

Do what makes you happy and keeps you sane. You’re likely to live until you’re 100 and be working until you’re 75 so you should do something you enjoy!

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