‘We’re trying to do good things, rather than just wave a flag’: EBC unites to beat Malaria

'The ethos that exists in the company is to… help real people on the ground,'' says EBC UK CEO

July 8, 2024

In the final part of our interview series with David Barrett, CEO of EBC Financial Group (UK) Ltd, he discusses the various outreach efforts of the global brand. First, his appearance as part of the University of Oxford economics department’s ‘What economists really do’ programme; then, EBC’s partnership with the UN’s United to Beat Malaria campaign.

Confused? This interview started by asking David about the regions and demographics that are driving growth in online trading, and the challenges that the relatively new brokerage has faced in its rapid growth journey.

World Finance: Before I let you go, David, you recently appeared in a webinar for the University of Oxford economics department – part of its ‘What economists really do’ programme. Can you tell me about that?

David Barrett: So, as with everybody, Oxford University is trying to push its brand. So it has a world class, world leading economics department. But most people from the outside look at Oxford as very insular, living inside its own bubble. They would think of economics as something that sits within the bubble of a bubble. And I think for institutions like Oxford, they’re very keen to humanise what they do.

They’re actually on their second series of podcasts, and they pick a different topic. The one that we were involved in was about potential tax abuse, or harmonising the tax regime and how financial markets can help or hinder that.

And I think what they’re trying to do is the same as us. They’re trying to connect with the wider audience, they’re trying to promote the quality of their brand. And they’re also trying to humanise what they do on a day to day basis. And I think for us it’s a good way of us showing that we interact on lots of different levels with lots of different people, and it helps professionalise some of the content and education that we push out to our clients.

World Finance: The headline activity in your outreach efforts seems to be your partnership with the UN’s United to Beat Malaria campaign; how did that come about?

David Barrett: Previously we spoke about how the UBO has an ethos, and how that’s pushed through the company. The different locations that we have offices are engaged locally with charities, they help support local orphanages, they go to food banks, soup kitchens, this kind of stuff.

Malaria is one of those things that touches a lot of locations that we’re in, and it’s a global thing. It kills more children than any other disease of its type. And it’s relevant to the people who work for us, and it’s also relevant to the clients that deal with us.

So for us it was a natural area to get involved in.

Being in Washington was a real eye-opener. I was approach by an American guy; Malaria everywhere, everybody’s wearing a t-shirt. And he said, ‘What are you doing?’ I explained, Malaria, UN… ‘Why is that anything to do with the US? Why do we pay for that?’

And the good answer to that, which I’d learned from talking to people during the week was, actually, you have more serviceman overseas than any other country. The biggest debilitator of those servicemen is malaria. If they catch it they have to go to the hospital. They’re out of action. For some of them it stays with them for life – as it does with children locally, and the local populous. So by helping to cure that, you’re not just helping the local populous, but you’re helping everybody else.

And I think that message of, we’re trying to do good things, rather than just wave a flag over here, is part of the reason why we got involved.

World Finance: And will there be more of these outreach programmes in EBC’s future?

David Barrett: I think so. I think as part of the ethos of the company, I think they want to give. And I think they want to be seen to be interacting with their client base. So part of the way of promoting the brand, and part of the way of getting across the ethos that exists in the company, is to be involved in local and sometimes global events that can help real people on the ground, in a real way. It’s important, I think.

World Finance: Fantastic. David, thank you very much.

David Barrett: You’re welcome