Ben Goldsmith is the founder of environmental investment firm WHEB.
In 2002, Goldsmith founded WHEB, a green investment firm which focuses on 'opportunities created by the global transition to more sustainable, resource efficient and energy efficient economies'. At WHEB he takes the lead on marketing, distribution and strategy.
As well as being a partner at WHEB, Ben is the chair of this family's philanthropic foundation, JMG Foundation. He played a key part in setting up the Environmental Funders Network, 'which brings together 150 trusts, foundations and individuals donors.
In the midst of the 2015 Swiss HSBC tax avoidance debacle, it was revealed that Ben, like his brother Zac, held accounts with the bank's Swiss subsidiary. The brothers inherited French nationality and non-domicile status from their father Sir James Goldsmith, and the bank was used to 'distribute a tax sheltered offshore fortune to around 15 family members'. The money has reportedly since been invested by the heirs in UK properties and businesses. When asked, Zac said the offshore structure 'was not designed to mitigate taxation but rather to preserve the assets for future generations'. Ben Goldsmith declined to comment further.
Family and personal life
- Sir James Goldsmith, father. A former Conservative politician, businessman, environmentalist and eurosceptic.
- Zac Goldsmith, brother. Conservative politician for Richmond Park.
- Kate Rothschild, ex-wife. A descent of the family who own N M Rothschild & Sons
Recorded by the Electoral Commission:
|Date||Name of donor||Amount||Donated to||Subsidiary|
|21/04/2004||Ben Goldsmith||£20,000.00||Green Party||Central party|
|04/04/2005||Benjamin J Goldsmith||£2,000.00||Conservative Party||Surrey Heath|
|30/03/2006||Benjamin J Goldsmith||£20,000.00||Conservative Party||Central party|
|07/09/2006||Benjamin J Goldsmith||£1,500.00||Conservative Party||Central party|
|07/02/2007||Benjamin J Goldsmith||£15,000.00||Conservative Party||Central party|
|19/05/2008||Ben Goldsmith||£10,000.00||Conservative Party||Central party|
|04/03/2009||Benjamin J Goldsmith||£10,000.00||Conservative Party||Monmouth|
|06/01/2009||Benjamin J Goldsmith||£3,000.00||Conservative Party||Central party|
|01/04/2009||Ben Goldsmith||£10,000.00||Green Party||Central party|
|14/04/2009||Ben Goldsmith||£20,000.00||Green Party||Central party|
|17/12/2009||Benjamin J Goldsmith||£10,000.00||Conservative Party||Somerset & Frome|
|27/05/2010||Benjamin Goldsmith||£15,000.00||Conservative Party||Richmond Park|
- WHEB Group, People, accessed 13 February 2015
- WHEB Group, Overview, accessed 13 February 2015
- Alex Blackburne Ben Goldsmith on fixing the environmental crisis through philanthropy Blue and Green Tomorrow, 7 August 2013, accessed 13 February 2015
- David Leigh, James Ball, Juliette Garside and David Pegg, HSBC files show Tories raised over £5m from HSBC Swiss account holders The Guardian, 11 February 2015, accessed 13 February 2015
- Paul Cheston Ben Goldsmith and Kate Rothschild divorce is settled in 65 seconds Evening Standard, 25 April 2013, accessed 13 February 2015
- Chris Blackhurst Profile: Ben Goldsmith, WHEB Ventures Daily Mail, 14 January 2009, accessed 13 February 2015
- Electoral Commission, Donation Search, accessed 13 February 2015