John Brown – An Industry Giant

It is hard to think of anyone in the leasing and asset finance industry who has made such a positive impression on so many people over such a long period of time.

John’s passing is a loss to his many friends and colleagues, and it is without doubt that the industry is poorer with his loss.

Over decades John led the high-value arm of what was then North West Securities and then added additional relevance with the establishment of the Industrial Bank Of Scotland (IBOS).  In addition, he was a mentor, friend, supporter, and reliable confidante to a great many people in the industry.  Interestingly he also had a significant hand in the success of a number of leasing companies through his considerable insight and supporting them ahead of the competition.

Once in retirement, John’s close connection to the industry and more specifically to its people never wavered, only in latter years when health issues intervened, did we see less of his presence at events, which had generally involved successfully extracting cash for charity causes from assembled crowds. He became a formidable seller of raffle tickets for the annual Industry Christmas Lunch at which, together with the FLA Annual Dinner, he was an enthusiastic regular attender.

John’s physical stature earned him the occasional, and affectionate, but utterly wrong, nickname of Tiny.  But it was in his strong moral compass, unerring caring for people in the industry and sense of right that he truly became an industry giant.  Without a doubt the first industry ‘A’ lister.

For those of us of sufficient vintage, it may be recalled fondly that John’s formal retirement event way back in 1996 was as great as the man himself, taking over the London Planetarium, with an amazing cast of industry colleagues and clients witnessing a private version of the then popular “This is Your Life”.  A fitting tribute.

Whilst he has passed, his memory will remain with many of us forever and his impact on so many careers will never be forgotten.  There have been few of his like and his memory will remain a leading light of the industry.

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