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Office Spotlight: Brewin Dolphin, Glasgow

Office Spotlight: Brewin Dolphin, Glasgow

Head of Office: Stephen Martin

Date opened: 1996 

Group assets under management: £39.7 bn 

Average portfolio size: £450,000

Office clients: 2,500

Number in team: 39 

Top three fund picks:

Man GLG Undervalued Assets in the UK

Blackrock Throgmorton Trust for small cap

Baillie Gifford American in the US    

Q&A with Stephen Martin, head of office, Brewin Dolphin, Glasgow (pictured below):

What is your typical client demographic?

It varies across the different sides of the business. We have a lot of clients who are either in, or approaching, retirement; but, we also have entrepreneurs and individuals who have just sold their businesses, as well as a substantial number of clients from the professional services sector too. 

What differentiates your region?

I’d say Glasgow is a more entrepreneurial city than most – there are a lot of SMEs alongside established wealth, so it’s a combination of dynamics. When we were recently hiring, the quality of the people in the city really shone through.

Glaswegians tend to have a tremendous work ethic – they want to do well, but they also know how to enjoy themselves! There are also a number of burgeoning sectors, such as life sciences and tech, which is testament to the level of education and ambition of the people on our doorstep. 

What challenges are facing your local area?

In Scotland, one of our specific challenges is that our economy isn’t growing at the same rate as other parts of the UK. There’s also the impact of the devolved tax system, which imposes a higher rate on the higher and additional bands and is creating a disincentive for people to take risk. Of course, Brexit is also a challenge for everyone – particularly larger companies and those looking to expand or evolve.

What is the best thing about living in your region?

Certainly not the weather… It’s a bit of a cliché, but the people in Glasgow are what sets it apart from other cities. People make Glasgow!

What is a typical regional saying?

‘What’s for you won’t go by you’. It’s fairly self-explanatory!

What is your office motto?

We don’t have a motto per se, but our values are: ambitious, genuine and expert. They’re what we keep in mind at all times when we’re doing business. Mindfulness of the people we work with is another value we try to instil in the office.

Are you bullish or bearish?

We’re somewhere in the middle. We’ve become more cautious, as all the indicators suggest we’re approaching the latter stages of the economic cycle. But we’re certainly not bearish.


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