Paul Marshall (Liberal Democrat)

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See Paul Marshall for other individuals of the same name.
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Paul Marshall is a founder of hedge fund Marshall Wace.[1]

He is also a co-founder of Ark schools, an influential player in UK education reform circles and former lead non-executive board member at the Department for Education.

Marshall co-edited The Orange Book, the unofficial manifesto of the right-wing of Liberal Democrats' with former education minister David Laws.[2]

He is a vocal supporter of Brexit and donated to the campaign to take the UK out of the EU.

Brexit supporter

Marshall donated £100,000 to Vote Leave, the official anti-EU campaign group which successfully persuaded the British public to leave the European Union on 23 June 2016.

Marshall also gave Conservative MP Michael Gove £3,250.00 for his post-Brexit PM leadership bid in July 2016. [3]

Marshall sees Brexit as 'an historic moment for Britain. It’s a moment when we have the chance to craft a new direction in the national life, particularly around prosperity and how we create wealth for the economy and nation,' he says.

'Prosperity UK'

Marshall is one of the figures behind Prosperity UK, a London conference for business and university leaders to discuss Brexit held in April 2017.

Marshall said of his motivation for convening the event: 'I have become increasingly struck by the very big contrast between the dialogue coming out of Westminster, which is going through various stages of grief, and people who are sitting in the real world. Business wants to and needs to get on with it. So we wanted to bring together business leaders, finance leaders, university leaders in a forum where they could discuss these issues and surface both opportunities and challenges.'[4]

Legatum Institute supporter

Marshall funded a 12-month research programme at the hard-Brexit supporting think tank, the Legatum Institute, entitled 'A Vision for Capitalism'. It was run by Conservative commentator Tim Montgomerie who went on to edit UnHerd, a website backed by Marshall.[5]

Liberal Democrat ties

Orange Book

The Orange Book, published in 2004, is the unofficial manifesto of the Liberal Democrats' right wing.

It has been described as 'an attempt by a small band of economic liberals to rescue the Liberal Democrats from what they feared was the philosophy of good intentions'.[6]

According to a Prospect account by James Crabtree, the Orange Book originated from a meeting at the Liberal Democrat conference in Brighton in 2003:

David Laws, who had in 2001 replaced Paddy Ashdown as MP for Yeovil, met party donor Paul Marshall for a quiet drink. Laws was a former banker who had made enough money to retire at 28, going on to work (unpaid) in the party’s policy team in the mid-1990s. Marshall’s career had been almost the reverse: once a parliamentary researcher to Charles Kennedy, he went on to run a hedge fund and become a key Lib Dem financier. Neither man saw themselves as hostile to the party’s social-liberal traditions, but were seen to be from its market-friendly centre-right—and both were worried about the direction the party had taken under Kennedy.[7]

The leftward shift under Kennedy, according to Crabtree, formed the backdrop against which Laws and Marshall decided to publish the The Orange Book: Reclaiming Liberalism to showcase a new generation of Lib Dem thinking.[8] The pair co-edited the book which was published in 2004.[9]

Support for CentreForum think tank

In 2005, Marshall provided £1 million for the launch of CentreForum, a Liberal Democrat aligned think tank, which he also chaired.[10]

Rebuke to Vince Cable

In September 2010 Telegraph interview, Marshall criticised Business Secretary Vince Cable for populist bank-bashing, and warned against European legislation that would extend tighter regulation from banks to the rest of the City:

"It's popular to bash the banks, there's a great deal of political appeal in that. But it's actually more important to fight the European financial legislation which is being driven by the French and Germans at the moment." He added: "We must be careful not to kill the goose that lays the golden eggs. The Government must be careful not to undermine the whole of the City of London through bank reform."[11]

Coalition 2.0 talks

The Guardian reported in November 2010 that Marshall was involved in talks about a coalition programme for the second half of the Parliament:

Lib Dems involved in this second initiative include Chris Huhne, the energy secretary, David Laws, former Treasury chief secretary, Julian Astle, director of CentreForum, the Liberal Democrat orientated thinktank, Paul Marshall, a hedge-fund millionaire and Tim Leunig, a Liberal Democrat minded academic at the London School of Economics who has also written for Policy Exchange, the leading Cameron thinktank.[12]

According to journalist James Forsyth, the initiative is referred to as Coalition 2.0.[13]

Business interests

Marshall founded the hedge fund Marshall Wace in 1997 with Ian Wace.[14]

George Soros provided more than half of the company's initial $60 million financing. Later, the bulk of funding would come from institutional investors.[15]

Marshall stepped back from his investment role in the company in 2004, but resumed it after the 2008 financial crisis. The Times reported in 2009 that his return had boosted the company's profits: 'It is understood that Mr Marshall will be the highest-paid director, although the allocation of the bonus pool has yet to be confirmed. It would further boost his personal fortune, which is estimated to be well over £200 million, and help to restore his image as being one of the most powerful men in the City.'[16]

Red Knights

Marshall is one of a group of potential investors in Manchester United known as the 'Red Knights'.[17]

Affiliations

Background

Marshall earned a degree in history and modern languages at Oxford and an MBA at Insead Business School.[18]

Marshall was a parliamentary candidate for the SDP-Liberal Alliance in Fulham in 1987, but failed to win a seat.[19]

Marshall worked for Mercury Asset Management, becoming head of European Equities by 1989.[20]

External Resources

Notes

  1. Louise Armistead, George Osborne's Treasury team - the power behind the coalition government, telegraph.co.uk, 13 May 2010.
  2. Louise Armistead, George Osborne's Treasury team - the power behind the coalition government, telegraph.co.uk, 13 May 2010.
  3. Vote Leave donor search, Electoral Commission, accessed 24 June 2016
  4. Hedge fund manager Paul Marshall convenes Brexit salon, Financial News, 20 April 2017
  5. Peter Geoghegan, Legatum: the Brexiteers’ favourite think tank. Who is behind them?, Open Democracy, 26 November 2017
  6. The Guardian view on the Lib Dem Orange Book, Guardian, 27 June 2014
  7. James Crabtree, Who are the Liberal Democrats?, Prospect, 21 June 2010.
  8. James Crabtree, Who are the Liberal Democrats?, Prospect, 21 June 2010.
  9. The Orange Book, Profile Books, accessed 11 January 2011.
  10. Barry Cohen, The Return of Paul Marshall, 1 October 2009.
  11. Louise Armitstead, Lib Dem donor urges Vince Cable to stop bank bashing and defend City, The Telegraph, 10 January 2011.
  12. Patrick Wintour and Allegra Stratton, Liberal Democrats work on identity – and joint policy with Conservatives, guardian.co.uk, 1 November 2010.
  13. James Forsyth, Are wedding bells ringing in Coalition ears?, MailOnline, 31 October 2010.
  14. Nic Fildes, Paul Marshall of Marshall Wace, The Times, 28 December 2009.
  15. Barry Cohen, The Return of Paul Marshall, 1 October 2009.
  16. Nic Fildes, Paul Marshall of Marshall Wace, The Times, 28 December 2009.
  17. Sam Knight, Football’s new age of fan power?, Prospect, 24 August 2010.
  18. Nic Fildes, Paul Marshall of Marshall Wace, The Times, 28 December 2009.
  19. Nic Fildes, Paul Marshall of Marshall Wace, The Times, 28 December 2009.
  20. Nic Fildes, Paul Marshall of Marshall Wace, The Times, 28 December 2009.