Kevin Hellard, President

Hi everyone. Finally, some summer sunshine. I hope that all is well in your work as we enter what will hopefully be the final stage of Covid restrictions.

Following our recent member communication, you will likely be aware of our CEO Michelle Thorp’s departure from the IPA, as she takes up a very interesting new role as Transformation Director at the Metropolitan Police. As I said in our note, the Board and I are very grateful for Michelle’s hard work leading the Secretariat in the nearly three years since she joined the IPA. Since then, a whole host of changes across the IPA’s business have been introduced, and I am very confident in the IPA’s footing for when the new CEO takes the helm. Michelle is actively assisting in finding a suitable replacement to continue her good work – details to follow as soon as they are finalised.

Hearty congratulations to our student members who sat this year’s recent June iteration of the CPI, CPPI and CPCI exams. As many readers will know, these rigorous tests of insolvency knowledge take considerable preparation. I wish all candidates every success on results day. I was also pleased to note that the exams, held in an online format, proceeded smoothly and without any material technical issue, receiving positive feedback from both students and training providers.

This is a welcome addition to the confidence that we have built in running IPA events and training online – not that there were many other options at the time! We recognise the benefits that virtual events bring in terms of a future hybrid model, for example attending a training session in a convenient virtual lunchtime slot, as opposed to being in-person and having bookended travel time. Many of us prefer to attend things ‘in person’ of course, but it is certainly good to have options, especially now that those options have been tested and we have confidence in them!

On that note, thank you to those who responded to the member survey on in-person and online events preferences. This will be invaluable for our future planning. There is still time for anyone else who wishes to respond – the survey will be open until the end of the week.

We wrote to members about the Insolvency Practitioners’ Handbook recently. Again, thank you to all respondents. Following your feedback, the Board has approved the future issuing of the handbook in a searchable online format. I hope that this new format will make accessing the handbook’s information easier. The book will still be printed, albeit in a limited number, for those who would like a hard copy for reference – more details on that to come.

And another thank you! This time to those who fed into our response to the very important Insolvency Rules consultation. We look forward to the progression of this matter and will of course update you on any key developments.

I can also inform you that the IPA’s membership and licence renewals deadlines will be brought forward by a month, so that this can all be arranged well ahead of the Christmas period. I trust that members will agree with this approach. We will contact you in good time before the renewals period with instructions, designed to make the process a quick one.

I hear that we had an illuminating session on the new pre-pack regulations and SIP 16 at the latest IPA Learning workshop earlier this month. IPA Learning will be back in September with a look at how the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act has developed. This is followed by an examination of public interest in corporate insolvency, and the final session of the year will then be a corporate insolvency review. I would highly recommend these to all who operate in the corporate field. You can book your place here. We deliver IPA Learning in partnership with ISS Training, and don’t forget that IPA members receive at 10% discount on ISS’s Anti-Money Laundering (AML) training with the code ‘IPA10’.

Depending on how the next few weeks go in terms of the Covid timetable, we very much hope to be able to welcome attendees to our return to live events in September, in celebration of our 60-year anniversary.

Stay tuned for details!