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Alumni Profile

Tony McVeigh

Tony McVeigh

MA Marketing 1995

Tony McVeigh is a former Director at The Royal Bank of Scotland. He is currently on sabbatical and studying for a Diploma in Organisational Leadership at the University of Oxford’s Saïd Business School. This postgraduate programme will broaden his knowledge and skill set of strategic leadership, in preparation for his next career move.

After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Communication Studies from Sheffield Hallam University, Tony wanted to pursue a master’s degree that would deliver a sound awareness of the business world and the ability to act effectively within it.

“The MA in Marketing ticked all of the boxes, equipping me with an in depth appreciation of fundamental management principles with the added benefit of specialising in my desired discipline,” Tony explained. “No other postgraduate marketing course offered that breadth and depth of knowledge at the time and it bolstered my confidence when applying for graduate roles.”

After graduating Tony went to work in the City of London in the financial services industry before joining RBS in 2002.

As a relationship banker, he was responsible for providing his portfolio of corporate clients with a range of suitable banking facilities but in particular senior debt (revolving credit facilities and loans) to enable businesses to finance their working capital and expansion plans.

He explained: “Senior debt could take several weeks or months to arrange and implement, depending on its complexity or size.

“The process would begin with client discussions at CFO / Treasurer level to understand their requirements. I would then structure an appropriate facility which frequently involved a syndicate of banks who would each provide a portion of the facility, depending on their credit appetite.

“Once the structure and terms of the facility were agreed with the client, I would compile a detailed credit application to evaluate the underlying business, highlight the key risks and submit the transaction proposal to the bank’s credit committee. Upon approval, I would appoint lawyers to draft a suitable facility agreement and then negotiate final amendments with the client. Once the agreement was signed, I would undertake the execution process to make the facility available for drawing.”

Tony's determination and focus were crucial to the success of improving his division’s capital efficiency. He explains: “Between 2012 and 2014 I achieved considerable success in improving my division’s capital efficiency by optimising the capital consumed by lending facilities on its balance sheet.

“Through a range of initiatives which included restructuring legacy facilities and resolving data quality issues, I was instrumental in saving the bank many millions in unnecessary capital costs. This contributed to improving the bank’s return on equity at a key point in its recovery from the financial crisis.”

Asked about his biggest challenge Tony commented: “During the financial crisis, I was a Vice President at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, leading a team of seventeen staff to manage a USD $69 billion portfolio of mortgage backed securitisations in the capital markets.

“This was immensely challenging as we were confronted on a daily basis with tackling the unique effects of acute transaction stress triggered by the Credit Crunch such as counterparty bankruptcy; credit rating downgrades; collateral delinquency; events of default and covenant breaches etc. Such severe market dislocation had not been seen before and keeping a hundred or so highly complex securitisation structures on an even keel for investors was a major achievement.”

Tony admitted that he was greatly influenced by his lecturers while at the University.  

“All of my lecturers had relevant industry experience which brought the academic theory to life as they were able to share their experiences at the sharp end, particularly during case study debates.

He added: “I remember the fascinating anecdotes of one lecturer, who worked for many years in the former Soviet Union when marketing or business theory had no relevance in a planned economy. A mind boggling concept for a business student to grasp!”

The 46-year-old also recalls the excellent social life in and around Sunderland.

“My abiding memory of Sunderland remains the fun times spent in halls on Chester Road. I was sharing a block with nine other students from around the world. There was never a dull moment. You could guarantee there would be party somewhere on campus most evenings, hosted by different nationalities.”

 

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