We once again returned to the Royal College of Physicians for our Annual conference with the theme, Be Inspired: inspiration for your future. The TMA team and the Conference Committee had once again done a great job at finding inspiring and entertaining speakers. A lot of hard work by all concerned meant we once again had a full conference for delegates to enjoy.
The day started with a networking opportunity over breakfast, sponsored by Mourant. Our president Peter Stevens of SME Capital then opened the conference by welcoming everyone, setting out the timetable and reminding delegates to fill in their feedback forms! He then introduced our host for the day, Charles Loake representing our corporate partner John Pye & Sons Ltd. Charles did an excellent job and ensured everything ran smoothly and to time.
The day opened with former BBC journalist Jonty Bloom talking us through Brexit woes for the economy in a light-hearted and humorous manner. His 30 minute slot flew by and left us all wishing he had longer to give us further insight on the UK’s economic future!
Following Jonty, we welcomed Andrew Sheridan and Matt Whitchurch of FRP Advisory who talked us through the difficulties encountered during the Administration of The Bloodhound Project, the challenge of trying to claim a moratorium ranks ahead of the International Traffic in Arms regulations (but failing!) and the heart-warming story of Ian Warhurst saving the project because his children saw it on TV! That led us into Rick Sturge, one of the Bloodhound team talking us through the project since it was rescued and how they hope to make the car go 1,000mph. We even saw up to date footage as the team were out in South Africa testing at the same time as the conference.
Just prior to the networking break, sponsored by Mann & Associates, we were delighted to welcome TMA Global CEO Scott Y Stuart Esq who came over from Chicago to join us. Scott spoke to us about the connectivity within the TMA “Big Tent”, the numerous networking opportunities globally and how TMA Global can help the UK and its other International chapters.
After the break, Tayyibah Arif of Weil, who kindly sponsored the NOW speaker, introduced the truly inspirational Claire Lomas to the stage. Claire talked us through the highs and lows of her life, from falling off her horse at the Osberton Horse Trials and becoming paralysed below the chest to the euphoria of getting married, having her 2 children and completing the London marathon in a robotic suit. She continues to be an inspiration, completing the Great North Run, the Manchester Marathon and has now set her goals on becoming a pilot and completing a circuit of the Isle of Man TT race on a motorbike. Claire’s story was summarised perfectly for me when she said that if she had to name her 5 best days, they would all be from the time after her accident.
Deepak Sikka, film producer and Oscar winner was the next speaker. Deepak talked us through the challenge of funding films and the risks involved for investors, not for the faint-hearted! He also told us the story of how the Kings Speech was sold to him and his reservations about a King getting over a stutter making a great film. Thankfully he agreed to produce the film and the rest is history!
An excellent lunch, sponsored by Freshfields, and networking session closed the morning. Getting the balance right on the day between content and networking opportunities is always a challenge but was managed as we retained a full auditorium for the afternoon session.
Immediately after lunch we came to the winner of our NextGen Professional of the Year Award. From a high-quality shortlist of:
Tayyibah Arif (Weil, Gotshal & Manges)
Paul Denvers (Endless LLP)
Martin Gray (Duff & Phelps)
Emily Scaife (Burges Salmon)
We were delighted to announce that the winner was Tayyibah Arif who received her trophy and prize from Jenny Oldfield of Veritas who had kindly sponsored the award.
The judging panel were once again faced with a tough choice to make and we are very grateful to the panel of:
Chair: Paul Davies (BTG Advisory)
Peter Stevens (SME Capital)
Peter Brewer (Clarke Willmott)
Anna Nolan (Paul Hastings)
Following the award, we were delighted to welcome TMA Global President Jeffrey Hampton. Jeffrey kindly took time out from his day job of being a bankruptcy lawyer at Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr in Philadelphia to join us at the conference and he talked us through how the TMA has worked for him over many years and how he still works closely using the TMA network to bring fellow advisors into his transactions. As always, we are grateful for the support of TMA Global and the willingness to attend our events.
Our first afternoon speaker was Doug Putman of Sunrise records who was interviewed by our very own past president Andrew Pepper. Doug was very candid about his purchase of HMV and his plans for the stores and I think we all wish that there were more business owners like Doug! It was refreshing to hear a success story in the retail world though we did find out that Doug’s successful business interests are not just limited to retail.
Just time to announce the winner of the iPad mini draw, kindly sponsored and announced by Stephen Robertson of Metis Partners, before the afternoon networking break. Congratulations to our earlier speaker, Matt Whitchurch for winning the iPad.
We then all returned to hear an inspiring story from the Grandads of the Atlantic, Neil Young and Peter Ketley. Neil and Peter joined us at lunchtime and at the champagne reception and hopefully a lot of our members managed to speak to them before and after their session. Another inspiring story of how Neil and Peter became the oldest people to row across the Atlantic. We heard about how they overcame a number of obstacles but sheer determination and hard work got them through 63 days at sea in a rowing boat. Like Claire Lomas earlier, raising a substantial sum for their chosen charities.
Peter Stevens then closed another successful conference and Charlotte May invited everyone to finish the day at the champagne reception kindly sponsored by Manolete Partners. It was great to see so many delegates at the champagne reception and that last chance to network and discuss the great speakers from the day.
A huge thank you to all those that contributed to making the day such a great success.
John Pye & Sons Ltd
Mann & Associates
Globe Law & Business
To our speakers and of course to you the delegates for making the day such a great success.
To my Conference Committee:
Peter Stevens (SME Capital)
Anna Nolan (Paul Hastings (Europe) LLP)
Andrew Pepper (Snowhill Capital)
Joanne Rumley (Foot Anstey LLP)
Neil Chesterton (The MacDonald Partnership Ltd)
who made my first chairing of the conference so much easier, and of course Nyree Magill, Kelly Darlaston and Tracey Robins, our TMA staff without whom, none of this would be possible, thank you.
Check out the photos from our excellent photographer and Board member, Adrian Doble.
Our 2020 conference will be on Thursday 19 November and I look forward to seeing you there.
Partner at BTG Advisory &
2019 TMA UK Annual Conference Committee Chair