The committee is made up of the following members:


Chairman - Ian NelsonIan Nelson - Ian has over 30 years experience in corporate finance, both as an advisor and principal. Ian is a chartered accountant and worked for Price Waterhouse, managing corporate insolvencies, and Ernst & Young, where he handled M&A transactions in a broad range of industries.

For 14 years, Ian was responsible for mergers and acquisitions at Commercial Union/Aviva and managed over 60 transactions in 30 countries. Ian then joined BNP Paribas group where he handled the acquisition and integration of two subsidiaries for their UK insurance subsidiary.

Ian is now a freelance M&A consultant and has and holds a number of director and trustee positions.


Ian Dowson - Managing Partner, William Garrity Associates Ltd which specialises in project management of disposals and corporate developments. –

Dual objectives are eliminating value-destroying items and managing a deal process so that transactions close on acceptable price and conditions.

Ian’s previous experience includes 10 years in charge of Corporate Development for UK industrial Group, B Elliott Plc and leading acquisitions in UK and Europe for a UK gaming group.

Membership secretary

Lesley Whitlow:
Lesley has been the membership and administration secretary of the association for several years. Most of Lesley’s career was spent with 3i plc, the private equity firm.

Other committee members

Shaun BrowneShaun Browne - Managing Director at Houlihan Lokey, the international investment bank, where he is responsible for their Consumer, Food and Retail group in London.  In 2015, Houlihan Lokey acquired McQueen, the corporate finance advisory firm which Shaun had established in 2002.

Prior to this, Shaun worked in the corporate finance arm of HSBC.  Shaun qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Price Waterhouse.

Florence KriefFlorence Krief - Florence Krief is director for investment banking at Options Group, international executive search consultants.

Brought up in Africa, Florence completed her undergraduate business studies in Paris before starting her career in the Large Corporates Divisions of Credit Lyonnais and Credit du Nord.

She then joined Societe Generale initially in Paris before moving to the FIG M&A team in London in 1996. Later, Florence joined ABN Amro and then Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein as an M&A FIG specialist. After 16 years in Banking, she took a break to establish an orphanage in Nepal and a UK charity to fund it.

Florence then decided to start a new career in headhunting, where she could leverage her in-depth knowledge of the investment banking sector together with her extensive network. She joined the Financial team of a large international Executive Search firm before joining Options Group as director for investment banking for the EMEA region.

When she is not taking care of her Nepalese children, Florence enjoys scuba diving and sculpting.

Chris MillsChris Mills

Formerly Chief Operating Officer of BNP Paribas Investment Solutions UK. Chris sat on the UK's management committees representing the businesses of asset management, private banking, insurance ad real estate.

Before this, Chris was Chief Operating Officer of BNP Paribas's UK insurance company, Cardif Pinnacle, and held the positions of head of legal, head of compliance, head of corporate governance and was responsible for all operational matters.

A qualified solicitor, having spent a number of years in privte practice, a member of The Law Society, and trained in mediation. Chris was deputy chair of the board of governors of a large school and provided workplace mentoring.

Chad MurrinChad Murrin - Managing Director and founder of Murrin Associates Limited, a corporate finance consulting and training business.

Prior to forming Murrin Associates, Chad worked for 3i Group plc from 1986-2004, latterly as 3i’s Corporate Development Director.  Chad read law at Cambridge University and then qualified as a barrister.  He is an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development and holds the CIPD Certificate in Training Practice.  He is a Non-executive Director of Beard Construction, Setsquare Recruitment and other companies.

Neil TaylorNeil Taylor - Primary Asset Finance

Neil held management positions with BNP Paribas' insurance divisions in Paris and the UK. Neil now advises small and medium-size companies on raising debt finance.