Rebecca Thomas, Board Chair

Rebecca Thomas is a proud English born Kiwi, who shares Gilligan Sheppard’s collective values of growing New Zealand capacity and supporting our people to succeed. She is a true internationalist, with global capital markets and fund management experience. A lawyer, a professional director, and CEO of a substantial wholesale fund management business, Mint Asset Management Limited, which was The Morningstar Domestic Equities Fund Manager of the Year in 2019.

Founding Mint in 2006, Rebecca has a strong pedigree in funds management, with a career spanning 33 years, both in New Zealand and offshore.

Her previous executive positions include Managing Director and Chief Investment Officer of Johnson Fry, a London-based funds management firm, acquired by Legg Mason, where she went on to hold the position of Group Chief Executive Officer. On moving to New Zealand, she became Chief Investment Officer for ING (NZ) Limited.

Rebecca has been a Director and Chair of the AFRC of KiwiRail Holdings Limited and an associate member and AFRC Chair on the Board of the Financial Markets Authority (FMA) from 2011-2016. She is currently a Director and Audit and Risk Committee Chair of Tainui Group Holdings Limited. She has also held several non-executive directorships for investment and property trusts, including Pathfinder Development Companies and LMI European Utilities Investment Trust Plc.

Rebecca is a member of the Institute of Directors of New Zealand and London, as well as a member of the Securities and Investment Institute of London. She has completed examinations for the UK Institute of Investment Management and Research and the London Stock Exchange.

Joining the Gilligan Sheppard board in June 2019 as an independent director, Rebecca sighted the following reasons, in no particular order.

  1. “I met Bruce Sheppard when we both served on the FMA and we found each other to be straight forward, strident, and practical. I met the directors and the leadership team at Gilligan Sheppard, and they are like no other accounting firm I have encountered before.”
  2. “They are among the very few firms that actively originate private equity and VC deals. There are many that do M&A, but few who originate the opportunity.”
  3. “Unlike most professional firms they are non-hierarchal, they share the profits with the team and operate an active ESOP equity scheme not dissimilar to other businesses reliant on talent.”

Rebecca says that her time with Gilligan Sheppard to date has affirmed her view that the client’s best interests are at the heart of what we do.

“They wholeheartedly believe in collaboration with other professional advisers rather than competing head on.”

Gilligan Sheppard is a firm that Rebecca has seen rise through the challenges imposed by Covid-19 and remote working and have been able to maintain focus and connection to their clients.

Author: Lisa Garrud & Rebecca Thomas.