London Metropolitan Archives - Item Details

PHILLIPS AND DREW

Date of Creation:

1892 - 1992

Reference Code:

LMA/4606

Scope and Content:
  • Records of Phillips and Drew, 1892-1992. The majority of the records were deposited in 1998 by Henry Claude Cottrell, who was a partner in the firm from 1952 until his retirement in 1978 and acted as senior partner in his later years at the firm. Papers relating to the Blue Arrow trial in LMA/4606/D were deposited in 2012 by Martin Gibbs, partner in Phillips and Drew and defendant in the Blue Arrow trial.

    The collection includes: corporate records including minutes of meetings of the proprietors and partners (1959-1963), partnership deeds and partnership rules; administrative papers of partners relating to the management of the firm, the structure of the partnership, accounts, staff, and the history of the firm; financial records including annual accounts (1936-1959), monthly account statements (1963-1975) and ledgers (1928-1950, 1954-1960); transcripts and evidence bundles from the Blue Arrow trial and appeal; publications, reports for clients and publicity materials; wage books, salary lists, booklets for staff, photographs of offices and menu cards from staff events; leases; research notes accumulated for the production of the firm's history; and accounts for Phillips and Drew Service Company.

    The records are particularly strong for those interested in: the development and use of computer technology for stock broking and in the Stock Exchange; changes to working culture from the late Victorian period through the twentieth century, including attitudes to women in the workplace; the recruitment and training of staff in the financial industry; and the formation of the Gilt-Edged Department and the development of business in this market.

    Please note that many of the partners and staff are referenced by initials only in the files. A list of partners can be found in appendix two of Reader and Kynaston's "Phillips and Drew: Professionals in the City"

    COPYRIGHT: UBS retains copyright interest in the records. Please contact LMA for further details on seeking permission for use of items in publication
Extent: 6.4 linear metres
Classification: BUSINESSES
Site Location: London Metropolitan Archives
Level of Description:
    Collection

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Administrative History:
  • Phillips and Drew (or Phillips & Drew) was a large stockbroking partnership based in the City of London. The firm was established by George Allan Phillips (1862-1914) in the 1890s, initially operating as a sole trader in his own name. Harvey Richard Drew (known as Dick) became Phillips' chief clerk in 1892 and was subsequently made a partner in 1895, with the firm being renamed as G.A. Phillips and Company. The firm became Phillips & Drew in 1905 when Richard Drew's brother Geoffrey became a partner.

    Initially Phillips and Drew was a small firm focused on managing the investments of private clients, but was reshaped in the 1940s and 1950s by an actuary, Sidney Perry. Perry joined the firm as a half commission man (i.e. someone whose pay was made up of half the commission they generated through dealing for clients they had introduced to the firm) in 1936. Along with a team he assembled, Perry built up a group of institutional clients, such as insurance companies and pension funds, with a focus on dealing in gilts, which proved highly profitable for the firm. The income from Perry's area of the business began to dwarf that of the other partners, and Perry went onto take ultimate control of the business in 1950, formally becoming senior partner in 1952. By the 1960s Phillips and Drew was one of largest firms of stockbrokers in Britain, with over 200 partners and staff in 1966.

    Under Perry Phillips and Drew developed a reputation as a meritocracy, hiring staff by merit without the consideration for where a candidate had been educated or their social connections displayed in many other stockbroking firms. The papers in the collection demonstrate this through the care that was taken in hiring and mentoring staff. The work of Phillips and Drew's research department also enhanced the firm's reputation, and it became known as a scientific stockbroker and a key source of investment analysis and advice. Jonathan Rashleigh, who worked in the research department in the late 1940s and became a partner in 1951, produced a regular half yearly publication 'Selected Industrial Ordinary Shares' which showed the returns on capital employed for leading companies over decade. Rashleigh was also significant in the development of the 'cult of equity' investment. Phillips and Drew were also innovators in the use of computers to analyse markets and evaluate the prices of stocks and shares. The firm's regular 'Pension Fund Indicators' and annual 'Surveys of Investment Management Arrangements' publications continued this tradition.

    In 1984 the Union Bank of Switzerland (UBS) acquired a 29.9% interest in Phillips and Drew and went on to fully acquire the firm in 1986. By this time Phillips and Drew had a leading share of the UK gilts and fixed-interest markets and was the largest UK broker in convertible stocks and asset management. The company was renamed as UBS Phillips and Drew.

    In 1987 UBS Phillips and Drew and County NatWest arranged a £837 million rights issue for one of their clients, Blue Arrow employment agency. To enable it to succeed both companies had to invest heavily in the shares themselves, but a subsequent stock market crash led the share prices to plummet and investors suggested that the companies' advisors had misled them. This led to a Department of Trade and Industry investigation and prosecution of the companies and eleven individuals, including four Phillips and Drew employees, for fraud. The trial of seven of these individuals and the companies became the second longest criminal trial in English history. Four of these individuals were eventually convicted but all four were later acquitted on appeal.

    Use of the Phillips and Drew name was discontinued by UBS after 1992, but UBS's UK asset management business retained the name as Phillips & Drew Fund Management. This was eventually combined with other asset management firms to form the UBS Global Asset Management division in April 2002.

    The firm was managed by its partners, led by the senior partner, and organised into departments such as loans, equity, pension funds, research, gilts and corporate finance. From 1968 the Partnership Policy Committee took a leading role on the firm's policy, and there were a number of other committees which existed to supervise the operation of different areas of the business and the work of specific departments. These included:
    - the Staff Committee;
    - the Research and Statistics Committee;
    - the Computer Committee (previously known as the Premises Sub-committee or Premises (Mechanisation) Committee);
    - the Office Administration and Accounts Committee, established in Jan 1966, which supervised organisation and methods within the firm particular matters overlapping more than one department of committee or outside their purview, and approved major items of capital expenditure;
    - the Institutional Clients Committee;
    - the Managed Funds Committee (established in Nov 1964);
    - the Investment Record Committee;
    - the Departmental Research Committee, established in Apr 1968, which issued a bulletin on the Research Department's work; and
    - the Private Clients Group (established in Feb 1970).
    There was also a Sports Committee, set up in January 1963, which oversaw the involvement of teams from the firm in various sporting events.

    The company formed a number of subsidiary companies:
    - Phillips and Drew Service Company, which ran its administrative services;
    - Phildrew Nominees Limited, a nominee company;
    - Phillips & Drew Pension Fund Trustees Limited, a company limited by guarantee established to act as Trustee and hold stocks of: The Phillips & Drew Pension Fund, formed in 1952 and The Phillips & Drew Service Company Pension Fund, formed in June 1961 and merged with the main company's scheme in 1965.

    Phillips and Drew were also connected to Throgmorton Management Limited, which was incorporated in 1957 and provided investment advice to trust funds, including a number of pension funds. Throgmorton initially began with the management of Mars pension fund's investments and administration in 1958, and went onto administer John Smith's Tadcaster Pension Fund. Phillips and Drew were involved in setting up the company and provided office accommodation for Throgmorton.

    Addresses: 2 St Michael's House, St Michael's Alley, Cornhill (1895); 70 Cornhill (1896- ); 4 Bishopsgate Street Within (1901); Palmerston House, 51 Bishopsgate/34 Old Broad Street (1914-1937); Capel House, New Broad Street (1937-1941); Pinners Hall, Austin Friars (1941-1963); Lee House, London Wall (1963-1982); 120 Moorgate (1982-). (All City of London).
    General Office: 1-2 Great Winchester Street (1959); St Alphage House, 2 Fore Street, London Wall (1962 - 1963?); Regent House, 1 Hubert Road, Brentwood (1974).
    Jersey Office: 60 Halkett Place, St Helier (1981); 17 Bond Street, St Helier (1984).
    New York Office: Tower 56, 126 East 56th Street, New York, United States of America (1984).
    Other addresses associated with the firm: Wood Street (1969); Triton Court, Finsbury Square (1984). (All City of London).

    Sources: "Phillips and Drew: Professionals in the City" by W.J. Reader and David Kynaston; "Anecdotal Evidence: An Autobiography" by Martin Gibbs; and "150 years of banking tradition" available at <http://www.ubs.com/global/en/about_ubs/about_us/history.html> (accessed 24th April 2013)
Creator: Phillips & Drew | stockbrokers
Copyright: Third party
Source of Acquisition:
  • 1998/068
  • The company's archives were donated to the Manuscripts Section of Guildhall Library in 1998. The Guildhall Library Manuscripts Section merged with the London Metropolitan Archives in 2009. A later gift was made in 2012.
  • B12/152
Access Restrictions: These records are available for public inspection, although records containing personal information are subject to access restrictions under the UK Data Protection Act, 2018
Arrangement: LMA/4606/A: Corporate records
LMA/4606/B: Administrative records
LMA/4606/C: Financial records
LMA/4606/D: Legal records
LMA/4606/E: Records relating to clients and marketing
LMA/4606/F: Records relating to staff
LMA/4606/G: Premises records
LMA/4606/H: Records relating to the history of the firm
LMA/4606/I: Records of Phillips and Drew Service Company Some of the papers had become abstracted from the main run of Henry Cottrell's files, presumably by William Reader and David Kynaston as they were putting together their history of the firm. Where possible these papers have been reintegrated into the original filing system. Many of the papers have Reader and Kynaston's research notes written onto them and many are labelled with a number and letter (for example 2A or 5F) which are thought to link to the chapter and section the document relates to the history
Related Material: See also LMA/4586: UBS Global Asset Management (formerly Phillips and Drew). The collection comprises Pension Fund Indicators and annual Surveys of Investment Management Arrangements, produced by Phillips and Drew before and after their acquisition by UBS See also British Library: The Kynaston Phillips & Drew Interviews (catalogue no: C1054), a series of recordings with employees and former employees of Phillips & Drew. The project was begun in 1983 by historian Dr W.J.Reader, and, after Dr Reader's death was continued until 1997 by David Kynaston. The interviews form the basis of the book, 'Phillips & Drew: Professionals in the City' (Robert Hale, 1998). Visit http://www.bl.uk/reshelp/findhelprestype/sound/ohist/ohcoll/ohbus/business.html (accessed 5 March 2014)
Publication Notes:

See "Phillips and Drew: Professionals in the City" by Reader and Kynaston, 1998 (available at Guildhall Library, reference L64:6) and "Anecdotal Evidence: An Autobiography" by Martin Gibbs with his account of working at Phillips and Drew and the Blue Arrow trial (available in the LMA Library, reference ___)