Sir Philip Hampton
Chairman, J Sainsbury plc/Royal Bank of Scotland
Sir Philip was born in England in 1953 and gained an MA in English from Lincoln College Oxford University before joining Coopers & Lybrand in 1975. He qualified as a chartered accountant in 1978, and then trained as an auditor, working in both London and Africa.
“I wanted to broaden my professional and academic experience and capabilities, I had already nailed down the financial side of business but I wanted to learn more about marketing and strategy, so a business school seemed like the right thing to do.”
“I chose INSEAD for two reasons, because I liked France and it was a one year course which I thought was enough. Incidentally, on the 80:20 rule I still believe in the one year course.”
Sir Philip began his MBA programme at INSEAD in 1980 and remembers it as the most international environment he had ever experienced. “I remember the first half of my MBA at INSEAD was really hard work but very stimulating, and the second half we were all focused on getting a job.”
When he left INSEAD, Sir Philip went to join Lazards Investment Bank and stayed there for nine years, working on mergers, acquisitions, business restructurings and capital markets. In 1986 he was seconded to Lazard Frères, New York and also worked extensively with Lazard Frères in Paris.
“I wouldn’t say that INSEAD influenced the choices I have made in my professional life (I think that opportunities did that) but INSEAD did enable me to bring a broader scope and a breadth of capability to everything I did. It also made me comfortable in different environments.”
Sir Philip went on to become Group Finance Director to some of the UK’s largest organisations, including British Steel, British Gas, BG Group, British Telecom and Lloyds TSB.
He was appointed as Chairman of J Sainsbury plc in 2004 and later that same year he was asked by the UK Government to lead a review of regulatory inspection and enforcement. This review produced the Hampton Report, which led to the Regulatory Enforcement and Sanctions Act 2008. In November 2008, Sir Philip was appointed as Chairman of UK Financial Investments Ltd (UKFI), an organisation established to manage the UK government's shareholding in banks subscribing to its re-capitalisation fund. In February 2009 Sir Philip was appointed as chairman of the Royal Bank of Scotland.
“I am proud that I have managed to maintain a well balanced family life and I believe that I have got more things right than wrong in my professional life.”
Sir Philip is a keen sailor who has already taken part in the ARC transatlantic race but harbours ambitions to one day sail around the world.
Sir Philip was knighted for his contribution to Public Services in 2007.