Fordham’s role at SVG bucks trend on gender

Margaret Ewing, Deloitte

Switch: Margaret Ewing left BAA for Deloitte

Lynn Fordham has won the highly coveted FD role at
SVG Capital, but her
appointment has shown up the lack of female FDs in the top flight of the UK’s
capital markets.

Fordham’s promotion this week comes as the most recent reviews of the FTSE
350 still show that only a handful of the firms on the index have female FDs.

The imbalance has been brought into sharper relief in recent times after
Helen Weir’s move from the FD’s job at Lloyds TSB and Deloitte’s current
vice-chairman Margaret Ewing heading for the exit door at BAA after Ferrovial’s

Rona Fairhead is the chief executive of the FT group, but only Jann Brown, FD
of Cairn Energy, still commands the finance function of a FTSE 100 company.

Fordham’s broad range of experience puts her in a good position to lead the
finance function at SVG, the company said.

Her role at SVG will centre on helping the company invest principally in
private equity funds that are managed or advised by private equity giant

SVG Capital sinks cash intoprivate equity funds based in Japan, North
America, Asia and the life sciences sectors, and also invests in unquoted and
quoted businesses.

SVG’s new FD has held positions as deputy chief financial officer and
director of business assurance at BAA, senior audit and risk positions at Boots
and Chubb and has also worked at British-American Tobacco and Mobil Oil.

Fordham qualified as an accountant with KPMG’s predecessor, Peat Marwick,
Mitchell & Co.

Her last role was at Barratt Developments in an interim position in M&A,
integration and strategy, and her raft of experience across a number of fields
is thought to have helped tipped the scales in her favour in SVG appointing her
to the prestigious role.

SVG said: ‘Lynn will bring valuable experience to the company and the board
and the directors welcome her.’

Fordham will also be proposed to the board as an executive director at SVG’s
2009 AGM, the company added.

Previous research by Accountancy Age’s sister publication Financial
Director has put the shortfall in female FDs down to the inflexibility of the
job. This is because it involves long hours and leaves little room for family

Related reading