2021 Edelman Trust Barometer Special Report: Institutional Investors

The 2021 Edelman Trust Barometer Special Report: Institutional Investors identifies the key factors shaping investment decisions and evolving perspectives around ESG, climate change, shareholder activism, and the retail investment landscape following the meme stock phenomenon that took off earlier this year.

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Job Openings at Edelman Smithfield



Chairman of Corporate Affairs and Edelman Smithfield

John has over 30 years of experience advising companies on all aspects of their capital market communications. He is co-founder of Smithfield, which is now Edelman’s wholly owned financial media and investor relations practice in the UK. 

John has worked extensively on cross border and domestic M&A and restructuring projects including Vantiv’s $28.8bn merger with Worldpay, CME’s £3.9bn acquisition of Nex Group, Ferrero’s £112m acquisition of Thorntons and Walt Disney Company’s acquisition of Euro Disney. He also served as adviser to CNH on its €13bn merger with Fiat Industrial, Scottish & Newcastle on its £7.8bn acquisition by a Carlsberg & Heineken-led consortium, and AkzoNobel on its £8bn acquisition of ICI. John also advised Brookfield Asset Management on its £2.7bn successful hostile takeover of Songbird / Canary Wharf Group, and Mubadala on the stake of a stake in CEPSA. He also served as adviser to Red Football on its high-profile £790m acquisition of Manchester United FC in 2005, and Arsenal FC on its £731m acquisition by Stanley Kroenke’s KSE in 2011.

Additionally, John has also worked on a number of IPOs and spinoffs including, C&W Worldwide from C&W Group (London), TNT Express from Post NL (Amsterdam), and Emaar Malls (Dubai). 

He has advised on activism and shareholder disputes including TNT Express, Kirin, Nissan, AkzoNobel and Punch Taverns . He has also advised on special situations in the pensions sector for schemes including AA, Boots, BAA, Co-op G4S, M&S, and Kodak. 

John is a graduate of University College London and a guest lecturer on Investor Relations and crisis communications at the London Business School.

Managing Director, Edelman UK

Based in London, Andrew Wilde leads Edelman’s financial services team globally. He specialises in retail and institutional financial services communications, advising asset managers, banks, pension funds and insurers – and their management teams – on their corporate profile and reputation. He has 20 years’ experience advising financial institutions across the globe, over which time he has built close relationships with senior editors across top tier print and broadcast media as well as industry bodies and policymakers. Through these relationships, clients have access to some of the most influential business journalists and broader stakeholders in the U.K. and internationally. His team represents many of the world’s leading asset management groups with collectively more than $20 trillion under management.

Executive Director of Edelman Smithfield, Head of EMEA

Alex leads Edelman Smithfield's EMEA business drawing on 20 years' experience in corporate finance and financial communications.

Alex is an experienced board adviser and provides strategic corporate and financial communications advice to companies and investors. He has led and worked on a wide range of complex and high profile situations across the capital markets worldwide, including M&A, restructuring, equity and debt fundraising, and shareholder activism.

In addition to transaction advice, Alex has extensive experience advising companies on their communications and positioning with investors and other stakeholders, complex tax and financial reporting matters, and managing crisis and litigation situations.

Head of ESG, Edelman Smithfield

Olivier Lebleu, CFA, has over 25 years of financial services experience including leadership roles in asset management, investor relations and ESG investment education.   Olivier started his career in New York advising European corporates on their US investor relations activities and moved to London in the early 2000s while working for MFS Investment Management as a member of their global equity investment team.   His other roles in asset management include head of international business for BrightSphere Investment Group, a USD$200billion AUM multi-boutique investment firm, where Olivier led client coverage teams for EMEA and APAC for over seven years, including during their IPO on the NYSE in 2014.   At BrightSphere, Olivier launched and led the firm wide ESG Working Group, which worked with affiliate firms to build and enhance their ESG investing capabilities.

Olivier joined Edelman in London in September 2021 from the CFA Institute, where he worked on the global launch the CFA Certificate in ESG Investing, and also participated in the curriculum development for the CFA Certificate in Climate and Investing.  Olivier holds a Masters Degree from Columbia University in New York, and is a CFA Charterholder. 

Anthony Simpson, Senior Advisor, Edelman Smithfield

Anthony Simpson is a Senior Advisor at Edelman. Anthony also serves on the Board of Cantor Fitzgerald Europe, where he chairs the Risk Oversight, Audit and Nominations Committees. Anthony’s most recent executive role was at J.P. Morgan Asset Management, where he led the Client Portfolio Management teams in London and Hong Kong within Multi-Asset Solutions. Before joining J.P. Morgan in 2015, Anthony held leadership roles for 9 years in the hedge fund industry. Prior to that, Anthony worked at Merrill Lynch and Goldman Sachs, where he founded and co-headed the Pension & Insurance Services Group in London. Anthony received an MBA from the Amos Tuck School at Dartmouth College and a BA in Political Science from Stanford University.

Senior Director and Head of Special Projects, Capital Markets, Edelman UK

Latika is a Senior Director and Head of Special Projects within the Capital Markets team. She has over 12 years’ experience in providing financial and corporate communications advice to management teams and communications leaders.

She advises companies across a range of sectors, including private equity, financial services, industrials and retail, working closely with them to craft compelling narratives for the media and capital markets. She also has significant experience in special situations such as crisis communications, M&A, IPOs and shareholder activism.

Latika also provides pro bono communications advice to the Parker Review which looks to improve the ethnic and cultural diversity of FTSE350 boards.

Senior Director, UK Head of Financial Services

Aidan is a Senior Director at Smithfield, Edelman UK’s dedicated financial services and capital markets division, specialising in corporate communications for financial services companies. Using his in-depth knowledge of issues effecting UK business and financial regulation, as well as his strong media connections with target press and thought leadership experience, Aidan helps financial and professional services companies to create platforms to generate differentiation and impact and advises businesses on positioning around issues as well as identifying themes and topics to develop and own in the media and for broader stakeholders.

Aidan specialises in consumer finance (retail banking, mortgages, insurance, price comparison), professional services, pensions and asset management.

Aidan has over 10 years’ experience in financial and professional services communications. He joined the team in 2008, and then re-joined in 2012, using the interim period to study for a Masters and PhD in History.

Senior Director and Head of Pensions, Financial Services, Edelman UK

Ged joined Smithfield in 2011 and has over 18 years of corporate and financial PR experience. As part of the financial services team at Smithfield, Ged works on a number of asset management clients and leads the Pensions Practice offering strategic corporate communications advice to a wide range of investment, advisory and scheme clients as well as a number of well-known pension industry bodies.  In this role, Ged has advised a wide range of clients on their communications across a wide range of regulatory, transactional and crisis situations, both in the UK and abroad.

Director, Edelman UK 

Olivia has over 12 years’ experience in Financial PR and Corporate Communications. She has a wealth of experience and strong credentials within the consumer finance, wealth and asset management space. Her asset management experience ranges from the institutional right through to wholesale and retail investment and, as a result, Olivia works closely with the investment, personal finance, broadcast and national business media. She has also worked with firms during fundraisings and worked on listing a number of Investment Trusts. Olivia is an English Literature Graduate from Newcastle University.


Director, Edelman Smithfield

Imogen is a Director at Edelman Smithfield with a focus on corporate communications for financial services companies. She specialises in asset and wealth management, fintech and consumer finance brands. With over nine years spent in financial communications, she has a strong contact base across national and trade media and takes a leading role in thought leadership initiatives for her clients, particularly around sustainability.

Imogen leads and supports on global and pan-European accounts shared across the Edelman network. Her current clients include large, listed companies such as LSEG, leading fintech platforms comparethemarket.com and Clarity AI, as well as household names in the asset and wealth management space, such as Mercer Investments, BlackRock, Insight Investment, Janus Henderson Investors, Principal Asset Management, Van Lanschot Kempen, Premier Miton Investors and GAM.

Her experience leading communications strategies for consultants such as EY means she has a strong technical understanding of operational and regulatory issues across the financial service industry alongside wider market and sector themes.

Imogen graduated from Cambridge University with a first-class degree in Classics.​

Director, Edelman Smithfield

George is a Director at Edelman Smithfield. He specializes in ESG and financial communications.

George has over a decade of industry experience and has led the development of Edelman Smithfield’s ESG practice since 2019.

His work primarily involves helping clients engage investors and broader stakeholders with ESG communications and disclosure. He has expertise in investor communication, ESG strategic communications, and technical reporting.

George has a CFA Institute certification in ESG investing, a corporate finance qualification (Level 3) from the Chartered Institute of Securities and Investment and a certificate in TCFD’s disclosure recommendations.

Director, Capital Markets, Edelman Smithfield 

Jess is a Director in Edelman Smithfield’s Capital Markets team, with a focus on private capital communications. She specialises in working with investors across growth, buyout and credit strategies. Jess advises on transactions, reputation development and crisis. She has a strong network of national and international media in business and private capital, and a track record of managing complex challenges on behalf of clients. Jess’ current clients include General Atlantic, Silver Lake, Hillhouse Investment and Battery Ventures.

Jess contributes to Edelman Smithfield’s global private capital knowledge base, which is used to bolster the company’s offering to clients, while furthering the industry’s understanding of how reputation affects private capital firms’ ability to fundraise and transact.

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