Click image for
SFS 2016
digital book

Lord Smith to take over as chairman of Alliance Trust

Lord-SmithLord Smith (pictured) has been appointed chairman of Alliance Trust to replace Karin Forseke who announced in November that she was stepping down.

The board has been under pressure to improve performance at the Dundee firm from activist investor Elliott Advisers based in New York.

Smith is also chairman of the UK Green Investment Bank, Forth Ports and IMI, and was previously chairman of the Weir Group and of SSE.

"I am looking forward to getting started and playing my part in delivering the changes that are necessary to return the Trust to the levels of performance on which it has earned its reputation and success," said Smith who will take up his position next month.

Between 1996 and 2002 Lord Smith was chief executive and then vice chairman of Morgan Grenfell Asset Management (latterly Deutsche Asset Management), at the time the largest pension fund manager in the UK and the leading asset manager in Germany. He led the Smith Commission into Scotland's new constitutional powers.

Gregor Stewart will become deputy chairman of Alliance Trust.

He said: "We very much look forward to Robert joining us as our chairman. The board has been working hard on implementing the plans announced on 1st October 2015, which include creating separate Boards for our savings platform and investment management subsidiaries. The Board's focus is on investment performance, on creating natural demand for our shares and on reducing the Trust's discount."