Lord William Hague becomes chair of Hakluyt’s international advisory board

Hakluyt has appointed Lord William Hague as chair of the firm’s international advisory board. Lord Hague will succeed Niall FitzGerald KBE, the former CEO and chairman of Unilever, who has led the advisory board since 2014.

Lord Hague began his career at McKinsey & Co, and was then elected a Member of Parliament in the UK in 1989. He was an MP for 26 years, during which time he served as Leader of the Conservative Party, Foreign Secretary, and Leader of the House of Commons. He retired from the government in 2015, and was appointed to the House of Lords. Since then, he has had a number of roles in business, including as a senior adviser to Citigroup, and he was appointed chair of the Royal Foundation in 2020. He is also the author of critically acclaimed biographies of William Pitt the Younger and William Wilberforce, and he has a weekly column in The Times newspaper.

Our international advisory board includes senior leaders from the worlds of business, government and academia, who support the firm’s global connectivity and expertise.

It’s an incredibly exciting time to be joining Hakluyt. The firm is growing at pace, and advising senior business leaders around the world on their most critical and complex challenges. I very much look forward to working with the impressive Hakluyt team, and with my fellow advisory board members, to support the business’s continued expansion.”

Lord Hague, chair, Hakluyt international advisory board

Niall FitzGerald KBE commented: “Chairing Hakluyt’s international advisory board for the last decade has been immensely enjoyable and stimulating. What the firm has achieved during this time is extraordinary, and testament to the quality of Hakluyt’s people and advice. I am delighted to have played a part in that journey, and to have worked with many wonderful and inspiring fellow members of the advisory board. I wish William Hague all the very best as the new chair, and I know it will be enjoyable and fun.”

Varun Chandra, Hakluyt’s managing partner, added: “It is a great honour to welcome Lord Hague as chair of our advisory board. His commercial acumen and experience of operating at the highest levels of politics, including as foreign secretary, will be immensely valuable as we continue to expand globally, and I know that the perspective he brings to many of the issues on which we advise our clients will be fascinating.

“I would also like to say a heartfelt ‘thank you’ to Niall on behalf of everyone at Hakluyt. His impact on our firm, culturally and commercially, has been immeasurable – he has been an outstanding source of advice, support and challenge throughout his long association with us. He has brought characteristic brilliance, wisdom and humour to his role with our advisory board, and it has been a personal privilege to work alongside him and benefit from his mentorship. Everyone at the firm feels incredibly fortunate that Niall has given us so much of his time and energy, and we’re delighted that he will continue as a member of our advisory board under Lord Hague’s leadership.”

Lord Hague’s appointment is effective from 1 May 2024.