At PTL we pride ourselves on being personable. Meet Matthew Binnington, Business Development Manager.
What was your favourite subject at school? Worst?
Favourite: History by a long way – I was very lucky to have an inspirational teacher early on. Worst: Chemistry (closely followed by Afrikaans).
Do you have a nickname?
If you had to be classified as a member of a “generation” which would it be?
I don’t know…children of the revolution?
What was the first record that you bought?
Scoundrel Days by Aha (I’ve only ever admitted that to my closest friends).
What was the last concert you went to?
The Boss at the Millennium Stadium. He was superb, played hit after hit for 3.5 hours straight. What can I say, I love the man. And he is a great role model for those of us who won’t be retiring this side of 70.
What did you want to be when you were at school?
I wanted to be a lawyer – LA Law was my favourite show and I enjoyed arguments.
What was your first job?
Serving behind the deli counter in Safeway, which may explain my life-long love of cheese.
How did you start in the pensions profession?
By complete and happy accident.
What is your favourite book and film?
That’s difficult…Catch-22, Grapes of Wrath, The Old Man and the Sea…
Film is easy: Withnail and I.
Do you support a sporting team?
The San Francisco Giants (any team fielding a Kung Fu Panda must be worthy, no?)
What three adjectives would your colleagues use to describe you?
I have emailed the team for suggestions, and will let you know when they get back to me.
What aspect of pensions legislation or provision would you change if you could?
I would call an immediate moratorium on use of the word “pensions” for a start. Then I’d revolutionise maths teaching in schools to incorporate personal finance. Encourage innovation in scheme design, focus on communication and member engagement, reform at-retirement processes – there is much to do, but what worthier cause?
Who is the most irritating person in the industry or public eye?
I used to be very irritated by Lily Allen but I am better now.
Who is the most influential person in the pensions industry?
Who can say? There are many visionaries and innovators in our industry, but we’ll only succeed by working together for the common good.
Should saving into a pension be compulsory?
No, inertia alone should do the trick. (With appropriate nudges in the right direction.)
Pension or ISA?
Neither in isolation, rather a holistic approach to life-long saving.
What is your worst habit?
Interrupting people mid-sen, no, quoting Woody Allen out of context.
When was the last time you lost your temper?
A few months ago while changing broadband suppliers. I won’t shame the company in question, but its name begins with a B and ends in a T.
What was the last “bargain” you got?
Signed first edition of Richard Ford’s “Lay of the Land” for £2.
What is your favourite meal and drink?
Steak frites and a glass of red wine.
What is the biggest bet you ever placed and did you win?
£5 each way on a horse at Newmarket. (As you can tell, I am an inveterate gambler.) I chose this horse because he had the same name as the cat next door (it’s a very sophisticated system – don’t try this at home). Anyway, Mickey won.
Who would be your ideal dinner guest?
What was the last country you visited?
How do you plan to spend your retirement years?
The dream is to move to southern France and spend my time hiking in the foothills and cycling the passes. But I’ll probably be too old by then…
Congratulations, you’ve won the lottery. What next?
See above. In this highly unlikely event, please accept my hypothetical invitation to visit me in my converted farmhouse in Provence any time.
Tel: 020 7634 4626