Francis Pike studied history at Cambridge and is an historian and economic and geopolitical adviser. He lived and worked for 20 years in Japan, China and India and has advised financial institutions as well as governments in Japan, Australia, India, China, Singapore, Bangladesh, Europe, Eastern Europe, the Middle East and the United States.
Francis B Pike
Francis Pike was born in Leicester in 1954 and attended Uppingham School in Rutland. He read Economics at the University of Paris during 1972 and then attended Selwyn College, Cambridge from where he graduated with a MA (Hons) in History in 1976.
Between 1976 and 1979 he was self-employed before joining Samuel Montagu, a British investment bank, whose investment division subsequently became INVESCO Plc, now known as INVESCO Ltd., in London in 1979. He started by working as a fund manager/analyst covering Japan, all Asian markets, Australia, South Africa, Commodity Stocks world-wide and the UK Overseas Traders sector, before relocating to Japan to set up INVESCO Asset Management Co (Japan) Ltd in 1983. Here he worked on research of Japanese companies providing sector, stock and strategic advice covering the majority of Far Eastern countries.
In 1987 he secured one of the first foreign investment advisory licenses from the Japanese government. Francis also advised the South Korean government on the development of their capital markets. (Subsequently Francis Pike also advised other governments on economic and constitutional issues.) From the mid-1980s he took a close interest in the opening up of the Chinese economy and became a frequent speaker at international conferences on the subject of China as an emerging capitalist economy.
In 1987 Francis returned to London to become the head of the Japanese and Asian fund management team. He was responsible for Japanese and Asian stock selection strategy; country allocation and resumed management of Drayton Far Eastern Trust plc which according to AITC figures ended the decade as the best performing Far East trust and the second best performing investment trust in all sectors in the UK over 10 years to the year end 1989.
Francis Pike also started the company’s pension advisory business in the United States. Francis Pike developed various new companies between 1987 and 1991 including Drayton Asia Trust PLC, (the first investment trust specialising in non-Japan Asia), Drayton Korea Trust PLC, (the first investment trust specialising in Korea), Nippon Warrant Fund and the European Warrant Fund, (the first derivative funds set up in Luxembourg); in addition he set up a number of mutual funds in the UK and launched a mutual fund company in Singapore. In 1989 Francis set up the first development capital fund for for Eastern Europe, The East European Development Fund and became Chairman of Central European Asset Management. In 1991 he moved back to Japan as President of INVESCO Asset Management Co (Japan) Ltd and set up a domestic pension fund management team. He designed a pension fund product and presentation for the Japanese market and initiated a marketing campaign that won the first corporate pension accounts awarded to an international asset management company. Francis was then made Chairman of INVESCO Investment Trust Management Co in 1991 and over a year increased the assets under management of the unit trust business from US$1.3bn to US$2.3bn. In 1992 he was made Managing Director of INVESCO Asia & Pacific.
In 1993 Francis joined Peregrine Investments Holdings Ltd and in 1994 moved to India and set up the first foreign owned Indian investment bank, Peregrine India of which he became Chairman of in 1997. Peregrine India, based in Bombay, comprised of a research group, sales, brokerage and corporate finance. He also set up an investment bank in Madras, the capital of Tamil Nadu. In 1995 he was responsible for the appointment of a country head and the set up of an investment bank in Bangladesh. In 1997 he was asked to develop the group’s activities in Eastern Europe, Russia and Central Asia and initiated the purchase of Carnegie’s Eastern European emerging markets business.
Francis joined NM Rothschild & Sons Limited as a Director in 1998 and was also appointed Director of Continuation Investments NV and Chairman of Rothschild Ventures Limited, responsible for overseeing the establishment of the European venture capital business. In addition he sat on the Asia Strategy Committee and was Chairman of Rothschild Japan KK and set up the first Leverage Buyout Fund in Japan.