Michael Spencer

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For other people named Michael Spencer, see Michael Spencer (disambiguation).

Michael Alan Spencer (born 30 May 1955, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) is a British businessman; the chief executive of ICAP plc, the world's leading inter-dealer broker. He was also the owner of spread betting firm City Index until 2014.


Spencer was educated at the Worth Abbey Benedictine (OSB) School, Sussex and at Corpus Christi College, Oxford, where he studied physics.


While still a student, Spencer made £30,000 dealing in shares, and then worked at Drexel Burnham. Fired from there for trading errors, he resolved to establish his own empire and Spencer founded Intercapital Private Group Limited in 1986. In 1998, it was acquired by Exco plc in a reverse takeover, and the enlarged business was renamed Intercapital plc.[1] In 1999, the company merged with Garban plc to create Garban-Intercapital plc,[2] which renamed itself ICAP plc in 2001.[2] Spencer remains CEO.

In March 2007, he was named Entrepreneur of the Year at the European Business Leader Awards. In November 2007, Spencer was awarded the Beacon Fellowship Prize for setting up ICAP's Charity Day.[3]

In September 2013, Spencer issued a public apology[4] after ICAP was fined $87m (£54m) by the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission and Britain's Financial Conduct Authority for its part in the Libor scandal.

He was named the Ernst & Young World Entrepreneur Of The Year 2010 at an awards ceremony held on Saturday 5 June, in Monte Carlo's Salle des Etoiles. Spencer was picked from among the more than 50 country finalists vying for the title, each of whom had already been named the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year in their home countries. The 2010 awards ceremony marks the tenth consecutive year the Ernst & Young World Entrepreneur Of The Year has been held.


Spencer served as Treasurer of the Conservative Party[5] from 2006 to 2010. In February 2010, he was attacked after it emerged he made £45m from the sale of ICAP shares just weeks before the company issued a profit warning resulting in a price drop of 19.5%.[6] With demands for his resignation as treasurer, Spencer announced he would stand down as treasurer and member of the board of the Conservative Party in October 2010.

On 26 March 2012, Spencer was named as a donor to the Conservative Party who has had a private dinner with the Prime Minister David Cameron. Peter Cruddas, then Tory co-treasurer, was filmed boasting that large donations to the party could secure access to the prime minister. Spencer along with business partner David Rowland were revealed to have donated more than £2m to the party in 2010.[7]

The Conservative Party resisted calls to return £4.6m donations from ICAP and Michael Spencer made during the period of the Libor Scandal when Spencer was also Treasurer of the Party.[8]

Personal life[edit]

Spencer has homes in Holland Park, London, Suffolk, Old Alresford Hampshire, Manhattan and Knightsbridge, London.

Spencer is an art collector with a twentieth century and contemporary collection, including the work of Lucian Freud and Scottish artist Jack Vettriano. He is a shareholder and an associate director of Ipswich Town Football Club.


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