Aura Financial is made up of a small team of big thinkers
Aura Financial is made up of a small team of big thinkers with very different backgrounds and complementary consultancy skills. For all our clients this means access to an expert team, working together.
Michael founded Aura in May 2004, with a range of long-standing former clients, to advise listed and private companies, regulators, governments, shareholders and individuals. The aim was to create a small team to work on interesting assignments for clients who understood and valued the Aura consultancy approach.
Michael previously established Prospero Financial within Bridgepoint Capital’s Hatch-Group, specialising in financial communications and investor relations. Prospero reached the UK M&A top ten league table within 18 months. Following the acquisition of Prospero by Huntsworth PLC, Michael left to establish Aura.
Over many years Michael has advised clients including Thames Water, Asda, Xstrata, BHP Billiton, L’Oréal, Rank Group, the Cabinet Office, Stagecoach, Enron, Gucci, London Metals Exchange and Evraz. The total value of these transactions is over $180 billion.
Andy has significant financial communications experience having worked on a number of substantial transactions and equity issues, particularly in the mining sector. In addition, Andy has a background in competition and regulatory affairs following a number of years at a leading public affairs agency.
Since joining Aura in 2004, Andy has developed a strong understanding of the issues around sustainability and best practice reporting, including the application of key reporting principles. He has also advised clients in sectors as diverse as private equity, offshore finance and the media. He has undertaken analyses for major hedge funds and applied his substantial knowledge of regulators’ interpretation of markets to advise on the likely outcome of a broad range of competition investigations in the UK and Europe.
Andy has a Masters Degree in Economic Regulation and Competition from City University.
Richard specialises in helping organisations to create and communicate powerful, distinctive and successful brands in an increasingly competitive marketplace.
He began his career working in a number of marketing, sales analysis and financial planning roles at Ford of Europe, before leaving to run creative and client services for leading international brand design and communications agency Imagination. Next Richard founded and built an award-winning brand design and communications agency, which was subsequently sold to the leading international communication group, Chime Communications.
Richard’s expertise covers all areas of corporate brand positioning, brand identity development, internal brand building and brand activation and implementation planning. He has also gained a wealth of experience in advising rights holders and corporate clients on sponsorship activation strategies and he also acts as a live event speaker performance coach to board members and other business executives. Richard has experience working with a diverse range of clients including: AXA, BP, BT, Daimler, Deloitte, Disney, Electrolux, ETB, the ICC, Lloyds Banking Group, KPMG, Mazda, M&S, People 1st, RBS, Shell, Toyota and World Snooker.
James Waite is a business builder, strategic analyst and brand development specialist, with 20 years of experience in initiating, advising and running international organizations. James began his career as a documentary filmmaker, and went on to establish an internet consultancy in 1994, which developed some of the first commercial websites for major brands including Adidas, Patek Philippe and Harrods.
James’ extensive commercial and communications experience draws on his international technical, creative and branding expertise to ensure close links between business development strategy and brand strategy.
Over his career, James has founded a number of enterprises in the technology, communications and sustainable building sectors. His ongoing role in these companies ensures he remains close to the commercial realities and organisational politics of business operation. James has a B.Sc. in Human Sciences from the University College London.
William joined Aura having gained relevant consultancy experience in market analysis for the drinks, agricultural product and manufacturing industries before then developing marketing strategies to capture value across new links in their respective supply chains. For a client in the educational services sector William also supported the migration of their sales and marketing function to a wholly online process serving schools across the UK.
William also worked at Royal Bank of Scotland in the unsecured lending segment to support the design of financial products and their subsequent marketing plans.
At Aura William applies his expertise to help clients achieve profile and deliver cost effective marketing activities by working with associates to create written and graphics materials, monitoring their impact and refining plans.
William has a BA in History from the University of Bristol.
For a decade from 2008 Matt was MD of TheNewsMarket, a technology and creative agency with 50 staff and offices in US, Europe and Asia. During this period the business expanded into Europe and raised investment from Venture Capital and Private Equity funds. The business was acquired in 2019 [by DMA Media] and Matt supported the integration process before stepping down.
With overall responsibility for client delivery Matt is trusted by world-leading brands to help transform their digital communications capabilities. He was co-creator of a proprietary distribution channel, connecting clients with media, which supported over 40 global brands. By producing engaging content, managing online newsrooms and creating online editorial destinations for journalists Matt’s team was able to deliver exceptional ROI and growth for clients.
With a portfolio of client projects including PwC at Davos, P&G at the Olympics, VW Group brands and adidas Matt has the experience to provide strategic advice and also commission content using a vast array of producers.
Please see Our Network for more details on the skills and international coverage of our network associates.