Our Board

The NS&I Board consists of Executive and Non-executive Directors and representatives of HM Treasury. Seven members of the Board also make up the executive committee. 

The biographies linked below are updated annually upon the publication of our Annual Report and Accounts.

Annual Report and Accounts

  • Executive Directors

  • Ian Ackerley

    Ian Ackerley

    Chief Executive

    Ian Ackerley

    Ian Ackerley

    Chief Executive

    Ian Ackerley was appointed as NS&I Chief Executive on 13 March 2017.

    Immediately before joining NS&I, Ian was at Barclays, which he joined in 2011 as Director of Investments, and where he was responsible for Barclays’ UK retail investment business.

    Ian has over 20 years’ experience in the UK retail financial services industry. His previous roles include Managing Director of Investments and Pensions at Virgin Money, Managing Director of Sun Life International, and working as a consultant with McKinsey & Company.

    Ian has an honours degree in Psychology (BSc) from the University of St Andrews and holds an MBA from London Business School, and he began his career with Royal Dutch Shell.

    2017-18 Salary:
    £180,000 - £185,000

  • Urvashi Bhagat

    Urvashi Bhagat

    Finance Director

    Urvashi Bhagat

    Urvashi Bhagat

    Finance Director

    Urvashi Bhagat joined NS&I on 17 September 2018. Urvashi came to NS&I from Government Actuary Department (GAD), where she was Finance Director. Urvashi is a professionally qualified accountant; she completed her training with PWC and later joined the National Audit Office. She then went to study for executive MBA at Plymouth Business School. Urvashi has worked across public, private and not for profit sectors.  

    After an initial spell of working in the private sector, Urvashi joined wider central government where she led many finance transformational change and statutory consolidation programmes. Among the most significant was the merger of HM Court Service into a newly-established executive agency. Prior to GAD, Urvashi worked in the NHS, implementing the recent Health and Social Care Act in East London, where she successfully led the programme of statutory and financial closures of seven Primary Care Trusts and played a significant role in the establishment of seven new Clinical Commissioning Groups. Urvashi was also the first Finance Director of the newly established GP federation in Newham where she led all aspects of the organisational and compliance set up.

    2017-18 Salary:
    n/a

  • Paul Habershon

    Paul Habershon

    Interim Director of IT and Change

    Paul Habershon

    Paul Habershon

    Interim Director of IT and Change

    Paul was appointed Interim IT and Change Director in March 2018, to establish and lead this new Directorate to increase the focus on and impact of IT and business change across the business.

    He is responsible for realising the NS&I’s goals through the delivery of aligned IT strategies and the rolling programme of business-sponsored change. He and his Directorate necessarily work closely with Atos, from operational delivery through enterprise architecture.

    Prior to working at NS&I, Paul has defined and delivered global IT and Business transformation programmes in telecommunications, financial services and public sectors with a key focus on value delivery. As a Consulting Director in Fujitsu he was responsible for numerous interventions defining IT, Business change and Outsourcing strategies.

    Prior to his time at Fujitsu he worked for global IT and consultancy companies taking responsibility for their largest and most complex client engagements. Paul started his career as a graduate trainee at Lloyds Bank.

    2017-18 Salary: 
    £10,000 - £15,000 (annualised equivalent: £195,000 - £200,000)

  • Dax Harkins

    Dax Harkins

    Business-to-Business Director

    Dax Harkins

    Dax Harkins

    Business-to-Business Director

    Dax is responsible for the development and delivery of the business-to-business strategy. His accountabilities include the management of existing clients, winning and transitioning new clients.

    A joint honours degree graduate of the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology, Dax has worked in financial services for over 20 years. Starting his career in sales, Dax quickly progressed into various marketing roles, with a focus on product development, customer management and customer experience.

    In 2003, Dax joined NS&I and moved from marketing in 2011 to Programme Director for the retender of the NS&I outsourcing contract. After successfully awarding the contract and ensuring a smooth transition, Dax was appointed to the board in 2014 as Business-to-Business Director and became an Institute of Directors-accredited Chartered Director in 2018.

    2017-18 Salary:
    £105,000 - £110,000

  • Paul Henry

    Paul Henry

    Director, Risk

    Paul Henry

    Paul Henry

    Director, Risk

    Paul Henry was appointed as Risk Director on 7 July 2018 and is a commercially focused regulatory change professional and Conduct specialist who has held Conduct, Compliance, Regulatory, Operational Risk and Anti Money Laundering roles at senior and Regulatory approved levels across a number of UK globally significant financial institutions.

    Paul has proven experience in demonstrating a combination of commercial acumen and technical expertise to deliver effective conduct and regulatory solutions to Governance, Regulatory, Compliance, AML and change management challenges. Paul considers himself a team player who partners with senior executive stakeholders in the rapidly changing corporate, retail, commercial and wholesale banking environments to achieve strategic and customer focused goals.

    2017-18 Salary: 
    n/a

  • Matthew Smith

    Matthew Smith

    Partnership Director

    Matthew Smith

    Matthew Smith

    Partnership Director

    Matt is responsible for the delivery of the NS&I outsourcing business model and the relationship with the Agency’s key partner Atos, including service delivery, commercial and change assurance and procurement. He joined NS&I in August 2018 and brings over twenty-five years of global experience leading sourcing, operational excellence and business transformation initiatives to deliver customer-focused outcomes.

    Matt was most recently Director of EMEA Supply Chain for DXC Technology (DXC), the world’s leading independent, end-to-end IT services and solutions company, during a period of major change before, during and after the creation of DXC through the merger of Computer Sciences Corporation and HP Enterprise Services. Before DXC, Matt had a long career with the Dun & Bradstreet Corporation (DNB), where he was most recently Global Vice-President and Chief Procurement Officer with responsibility for sourcing and third-party compliance.

    Prior to that he was International Vice-President for strategy implementation and business process reengineering across DNB’s footprint in Europe, Asia Pacific and South America, where he partnered with stakeholders to deliver operations and supply chain strategy, operating margin optimisation and acquisition integration. Earlier in his career, Matt had a variety of roles in operations management, sourcing and change implementation.

    Matt is a certified practitioner of Managing Successful Programmes and a previous recipient of the annual Institute of Consulting award for best internal consulting project.

    2017-18 Salary: 
    n/a

  • Sarah Tebbutt

    Sarah Tebbutt

    People and Strategy Director

    Sarah Tebbutt

    Sarah Tebbutt

    People and Strategy Director

    As Director of People & Strategy, Sarah leads NS&I’s strategy, policy and innovation, and market intelligence and research, and media functions. She also leads on all aspects of people: workplace, culture, diversity, employee engagement, internal communications and human resources. Sarah chairs the Conduct Committee and is responsible for the FCA Senior Managers Regime. She served as Acting Risk Director between March and August 2018.

    Sarah Tebbutt joined NS&I in June 2013 after a twenty year career at HM Treasury, where in recent years she was responsible for Corporate Change, and before that, Debt and Reserves Management, working closely with NS&I, The Bank of England, the Debt Management Office and the Royal Mint.

    Prior to those roles she worked in a Ministers’ office and as a negotiator at the Cabinet Office, European Council and World Trade Organisation. 

    Sarah studied Genetics at Cambridge University and has an MBA from Imperial College, London.  

    2017-18 Salary: 
    £110,000 - £115,000 (annualised equivalent £115,000 - £120,000)

  • Jill Waters

    Jill Waters

    Retail Director

    Jill Waters

    Jill Waters

    Retail Director

    Jill was NS&I’s Acting Retail Director. Following an open recruitment exercise, Jill was appointed in the substantive position as Retail Director in March 2018 and is responsible for leading the development, management and growth of the Retail business on behalf of NS&I, which includes customer offer, marketing and sales, brand, product management, retail experience and complaints.

    In her time at NS&I, Jill has also held the following roles: Head of Sales and Operational Delivery, Head of Digital Channels and Assistant Director for Retail.

    In 2001, she joined NS&I from Yorkshire Electricity where she was responsible for the Customer and Sales Strategy for the newly developed privatised consumer utility markets. Prior to that Jill was an independent financial adviser, following many years at Norwich Union advising on pensions and life insurance.

    Jill is a member of the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), the Institute of Finance Services (IFS) and Association of Business Psychology.

    2017-18 Salary:
    £115,000 - £120,000

  • Ed Anderson

    Ed Anderson

    Independent Non-executive Chairman

    Ed Anderson

    Ed Anderson

    Independent Non-executive Chairman

    Ed was appointed as a Non-executive Director on 1 February 2016 and was appointed Chairman on 1 January 2017.

    Ed was Chairman of the Yorkshire Building Society from 2007 to 2015. He was Managing Director of Leeds Bradford Airport for 10 years and is currently Chairman of the Airport Operators Association (AOA). He is also a former President, and Chairman, of Leeds Chamber of Commerce and is a director of a number of other public and voluntary sector organisations in Yorkshire including being a member of the University of Leeds Council and chairing its Audit and Risk Committee.

    Ed is an economics graduate and a qualified accountant. He is a former High Sheriff, and currently Deputy Lieutenant of West Yorkshire.

    2017-18 Remuneration:  
    £20,000 - £25,000

  • Christopher Fisher

    Christopher Fisher

    Independent Non-executive Director

    Christopher Fisher

    Christopher Fisher

    Independent Non-executive Director

    Christopher was appointed as a Non–executive Director in March 2017.

    He chairs the Marshall Scholarship Programme on behalf of the Foreign Office, serves as a Non-executive Director of SEGRO, the FTSE 100 property company, and is a senior adviser to Penfida, the corporate finance adviser to pension scheme trustees.

    Until recently he served as chairman of Bank of Ireland UK, the financial services partner of the Post Office and the AA, and as President of the Council of the University of Reading. His previous appointments include senior roles with Lazard, KPMG and Penfida, and as a trustee of the Imperial War Museum.

    2017-18 Remuneration:  
    £15,000 - £20,000

  • James Furse

    James Furse

    Independent Non-executive Director and Chairman of the Appointments and Remuneration Committee

    James Furse

    James Furse

    Independent Non-executive Director and Chairman of the Appointments and Remuneration Committee

    James was appointed as Non-executive Director in January 2012 and, having served his two terms of office during this financial year, his contract was extended exceptionally until 31 December 2018 to assist continuity due to the number of new appointments that were made to the Board during 2017.

    Before joining the Board, James enjoyed a long career with the John Lewis Partnership, progressing through a series of roles to become a managing director within the retail operation and subsequently Director Credit Card Services. His final role with the John Lewis Partnership was as Managing Director of greenbee.com, now John Lewis Financial Services.

    In 2013 he joined the board of Ageas UK as a Non-executive Director and is Chairman of its Remuneration Committee, and James has been the Non-executive Chairman of Pukka Herbs Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of Unilever, since 2012.

    2017-18 Remuneration:  
    £15,000 - £20,000

  • Sharmila Nebhrajani OBE

    Sharmila Nebhrajani OBE

    Independent Non-executive Director and Chair of the Audit and Risk Committee

    Sharmila Nebhrajani OBE

    Sharmila Nebhrajani OBE

    Independent Non-executive Director and Chair of the Audit and Risk Committee

    Sharmila was appointed as a Non-executive Director in March 2017. Sharmila is Chief Executive of Wilton Park, an Executive Agency of the Foreign Office convening international policy discussions in areas such as peace, prosperity, defence and security.

    Before this she was Chair of the Human Tissue Authority, the organisation that regulates the use of human organs and tissue for transplant and research and Director of External Affairs for the Medical Research Council. She is a Board Member of the British Medical Journal and also of Lifesight, a pensions master trust, and was for 12 years Chief Operating Officer of BBC New Media and Technology, the division that built and launched the iPlayer.

    A biomedical scientist by background, Sharmila is also a chartered accountant. She read Physiological Sciences at Oxford University, and was awarded an OBE in 2014 for services to Medical Research.

    2017-18 Remuneration:  
    £15,000 - £20,000

  • Mario Pisani

    Mario Pisani

    HM Treasury representative

    Mario Pisani

    Mario Pisani

    HM Treasury representative

    Mario was appointed to the board as HM Treasury’s representative on 1 April 2016.

    Mario is Deputy Director, Debt and Reserves Management at HM Treasury. In his role he is responsible for advising on debt financing issues (both wholesale, working with the Debt Management Office, and retail, working with NS&I), managing the UK’s official reserves, and coinage policy. His team also has responsibility for a range of Bank of England issues (notes, market interventions and shareholder interest) as well as analysis of the public sector balance sheet. He sits on the Themes Subcommittee of the Royal Mint Advisory Committee on the Design of Coins, Medals, Seals and Decorations.

    Since joining HM Treasury in 2005, Mario has worked on international issues, economic forecasting, macroeconomic policy and communications. During 2006 Mario was seconded to the Financial Times London. Between 2008 and 2011 he was Private Secretary to the Chancellor of the Exchequer. Between 2013 and 2016 he represented HM Treasury at the G20 Framework Working Group. During 2014 he worked on the Referendum on Scottish Independence.

    He is a Senior Visiting Research Fellow at King’s College London. Mario holds degrees in Economics from the University of Kent and the University of Oxford, and is a qualified accountant.

Appointments

All appointments to NS&I’s Board are made on merit. Political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, in accordance with the original Nolan recommendations there is a requirement for appointees’ political activity (if any) to be made public.

Nolan recommendations

As part of the government’s transparency agenda NS&I has published an organisational chart showing the most senior salaries. This information will be updated to reflect any changes.

NS&I Board responsibilities and terms of reference NS&I Board members register of interests

Directors' Expenses

NS&I staff members undertake their duties in line with the requirements of the Civil Service Code and Civil Service Management Code, which make clear that civil servants must make sure public money and other resources are used properly and efficiently.

NS&I has published the following information about NS&I Executive Directors and Non-executive Directors’ business expenses & hospitality. NS&I will continue to publish similar information on a quarterly basis.

Organisational chart showing senior salaries Directors' Expenses

Committees

The Audit and Risk Committee consists solely of Non-executive Directors. It is chaired by Sharmila Nebhrajani and comprises Christopher Fisher and Mario Pisani. The main responsibilities of the Audit and Risk Committee are to assure the Accounting Officer and the Board as to the adequacy of:

  • The strategic processes for risk control, governance and security within NS&I and processes outsourced to Atos
  • The accounting policies, accounts and annual report of NS&I
  • Internal and external audit plans and the results of this work along with the management’s responses to any issues identified
  • The system of internal control within both NS&I and Atos, including internal audit arrangements within NS&I and the NS&I account within Atos
  • Processes in place to ensure appropriate compliance with regulation
  • Anti-fraud policies, whistle-blowing processes and arrangements for special investigations

At the invitation of the Committee, the Chief Executive, Finance Director and Risk Director also attend, as well as the Head of Internal Audit, the Director from the National Audit Office (NAO) and a representative from the external audit partner (under the NAO’s framework agreement). All Directors have access to the minutes of the Audit and Risk Committee meetings.

Audit and Risk Committee terms of reference

The Appointments and Remuneration Committee comprises two Non-executive Directors; the Chief Executive and the Director of NS&I’s People & Strategy Directorate.

The committee reviews the Chief Executive’s recommendations on pay and performance-related awards to confirm that it is consistent with government policy and HM Treasury pay guidance. Agency performance measures are audited outcomes; individual performance objectives are assessed by the Chief Executive using appropriate measures of outcomes.

The committee also advises on the role and appointment of Executive NS&I Board members. The committee reviews succession planning arrangements for senior staff within NS&I.

Click on the link below to view the Appointments and Remuneration Committee terms of reference:

Appointments and Remuneration Committee terms of reference

Inspire & Invest is our business strategy from 2018-2023

Our Inspire & Invest strategy has cross-cutting strategic aims reflecting our joined up approach to delivering our refreshed purpose and mission.

Our purpose and mission

Below are our six strategic aims:

  1. Delivering for government
  2. Delivering digital first products and services for our customers
  3. Using our insight and policy expertise to meet our customers’ needs
  4. Delivering efficiently
  5. Doing the right thing
  6. Being inspiring and empowered

Find out more about our strategy, including our purpose, mission and values.

Find out more

Strategic Partnerships

Our operational partner

In May 2013 NS&I announced that Atos had been awarded an outsourcing contract to deliver customer-facing and back office services to NS&I’s 25 million customers.

The contract, which began on 1 April 2014, sits at the heart of NS&I’s business and support its range of savings products and its payment processing services for government clients.

NS&I Government Payment Services

NS&I Government Payment Services transforms public sector payments. Our digital payment platform and processes enable the efficient delivery of citizen-centred transactions.

By government. For government.

 

More about NS&I GPS