Smart reiterated that she thought it would be possible, given that expert teams would be dealing with specific schemes on a case-by-case basis, not the chair. But she conceded that were she appointed, a role for her husband “within a very significant pension scheme” would be inappropriate, and so he would not be applying for similar roles after stepping down from BA.
Committee member Sir Desmond Swayne MP then queried Smart’s continued involvement in the development of an investment-monitoring tool with SmartCats, a company she co-founded with Fraser Smart.
Swayne questioned whether her appointment as chair of TPR might unduly influence prospective clients of the business.
In response, Smart proposed that “if I’m appointed, I would have no role in any discussions in terms of the use of the tool by any entity that is regulated by TPR. And my involvement is not publicised in any way or used to publicise the tool to that audience”.
SmartCats would be appointing additional personnel to take on that role and she would be reducing her involvement accordingly, she said.
Benjamin Mercer is a reporter at FTAdviser's sister publication Pensions Expert