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Decade of Excellence Award

Diana Chan - CEO, EuroCCP

Chan has led European equities clearing house, EuroCCP, since its inception by Depository Trust and Clearing Corporation in 2007, following a long career in the arcane world of post-trade services. The clearer went live in 2008, just as Europe’s equity trading landscape was being transformed by a slew of alternative platforms, which helped spawn, in parallel, the creation of low-cost, independent clearing houses. Under Chan’s leadership, EuroCCP has overcome long-established incumbents to become the region’s largest equities clearer. She has secured access to clearing for some major markets, and also oversaw the company’s merger with rival EMCF in 2013, a deal which saw Bats Europe, Nasdaq and ABN Amro Clearing take a stake in the platform along with DTCC. Chan has been a tireless campaigner for greater clearing competition in Europe through a process called interoperability. The system was eventually introduced in 2012 and is a model which allows several clearing houses to clear for a given trading platform, giving users a choice of clearing provider and the ability to lower costs.

David Lester - Chief Strategy Officer, London Stock Exchange Group

Lester has often been seen as a power behind the throne at the UK exchange group during its transformation into a leading global financial infrastructure company under the leadership of Xavier Rolet. Having joined the company in 2001 as its chief information officer, Lester has been repeatedly moved onto projects of strategic importance, holding responsibility at times for its technology and market data as well being chief executive of Turquoise, the equity trading platform which the LSE jointly owns with a consortium of 12 banks. Although he lost out to Rolet on becoming CEO in 2009, he took the opportunity to focus on the group’s strategy and helped lead the deals for Turquoise, Sri Lanka IT company MillenniumIT and taking full control of the FTSE index group. The most significant deal he helped to oversee to date is the $2.7 billion takeover of Frank Russell Company, which closed in December 2014 and, in a single stroke, turned the LSE into the world’s third-largest index provider. In February 2016, he was named chief strategy officer, a move which saw the LSE introduce a title that is common at other international exchange groups.

David Peniket - President, ICE Futures Europe

Peniket has been a quiet force at Intercontinental Exchange for well over a decade. He has been Jeffrey Sprecher’s man in Europe ever since ICE acquired the London-based International Petroleum Exchange in 2001. He joined ICE as part of that merger, having been IPE’s finance director since 1999. In the subsequent 14 years, Peniket has been a key senior voice at the Atlanta-based exchange group, and instrumental in its European mergers, of which there have been more than a dozen. He was also closely involved in ICE’s 2005 initial public offering and the launch in 2009 of ICE Clear Europe, the first derivatives clearing house to be set up in London in a century. Following the acquisition of NYSE Euronext and its Liffe financial futures franchise, Peniket presides over a futures exchange, called ICE Futures Europe, that is one of the most diversified in the world. Although his role as chief operating officer for the exchange was handed to Stuart Williams in July 2016, Peniket remains a key lieutenant of Sprecher in Europe.

Michael Spencer - Group CEO, Icap

Few people symbolise the entrepreneurial spirit and capitalist instincts of the City of London as much as Michael Spencer. A former Treasurer of the Conservative Party, Spencer founded Icap in 1986, and developed it into the largest company of its kind in the modern age. These days, Spencer is more more likely to be found talking about compression and fintech than interdealer broking, as he reinvents his company in line with the evolution of the market and the wider world. In November 2015, the company announced plans to withdraw from the voice markets where it had made its name by agreeing to sell the firm’s global broking business to rival Tullett Prebon. The new Icap is being built around electronic trading, post-trade technology businesses and fintech. Icap’s venture capital arm, Euclid, invested in blockchain firm Digital Asset in January 2016. During its earnings call in February, Icap said it was looking at a blockchain for ‘next-generation products’ and seeking to identify further opportunities for innovation.

Kay Swinburne - Conservative Member of the European Parliament for Wales

Having studied for a PhD in medical research, Swinburne worked initially in healthcare and then as a healthcare sector banker at Deutsche Bank in the 1990s. But she has really made her mark on the financial services sector as a prominent European lawmaker. After six years in local politics, she became a Conservative member of the European Parliament for Wales in 2009, becoming a member of the influential Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs. She took office just as the EU was preparing a raft of reforms to shore up markets in the wake of the financial crisis, and she helping to draft many rules from a parliamentary perspective. She came to prominence with her own-initiative report in 2010 on the overhaul of the EU’s trading rulebook, the Market in Financial Instruments Directive – a paper, though divisive, that proved highly influential in the drafting of the final text. She also been active on other regulatory issues, including on the derivatives reform, the European Market Infrastructure Regulation. Her stance may have not always proved popular with all corners of the UK’s financial industry, but she has also made sure that the views of City of London have been heard in Brussels.