The City of London-based red tape and risk management software supplier has pulled an interesting rabbit out of the new boss hat. Alastair Brown will take up the CEO role at Lombard Risk Management (LRM:AIM) on 1 December, stepping into the shoes of former CEO John Wisbey, who left the company at full year results in May, but he'll find the challenges he faces very different from those he's used to.
Brown has a long history in the financial markets management game. Joining from Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), where he worked for 15 years in a variety of leadership roles, including chief information officer of International Banking, and most recently Head of eChannels, Global Transaction Services. Before that he worked at NatWest markets. Big companies those, with big company challenges, but from Tuesday he'll have to put on his small company hat and, as Rod Stewart once sang, 'wear it well.'
Lombard has faced several ups and downs over the past few years. Emerging from new business hiatus that dogged profit performance last year to 31 March 2015, the company has managed to bounce back reasonably effectively, making real progress in new client numbers and in expanding the company's geographic reach into the US and across the Far East.
'He is joining a company in a relatively strong position,' argues Peter Roe, analyst at the TechMarketViews website, flagging Lombard's 'tried-and–tested platform approach' and offering trading companies straightforward and cost-effective solutions based on substantial experience and domain expertise.
But we have been here before. The effects of the massive shocks to global financial system of 2008/2009 have led to a stream of new rules and regulations for financial institutions, yet implementation has been slow, with push-backs and delays a recurring theme.
Mifid II markets regulation in Europe was recently bounced a year further back, delaying the intended overhaul of derivatives trading, clearer bond pricing and the closer policing of financial advisers. Let's hope Brown can avoid false dawns and deliver on the undoubted promise the company offers.