LIBS Founders Series: featuring Mark Byrne

Mark Byrne

We chat about Mark’s time on the LIBS Board and how his involvement gave him the ‘edge’ in his career.

I moved to London and started my career in banking in RBS in September 2008, right at the heart of the financial crisis. I chose to move to London to start my career on a graduate programme in front office of a global bank, a role that just wasn’t available in Ireland. I have ended up specialising in fixed income, specifically pricing new bond deals for Government related institutions. And now TD has moved a large proportion of my team to Dublin as our EU hub post Brexit.

I joined at the start of the LIBS journey and saw it become much bigger

I’m sure everyone involved in the initial event back in the very beginning will lay claim to being the brains behind LIBS. But Darren Glynn, the original Chair, had the initial idea and it took off after that.

Initially LIBS was a continuation of something similar to what many of us had been involved in college. However, there was a massive market for what we set out to do and it became something much bigger.

I never held a formal title or had a specific mandate, something I’m not sure Darren (Chair at the time) knew… ! I managed the relationships with a few of the key early institutional sponsors and we all took it in turns to be the point person for a specific event.

LIBS gave me the ‘edge’ to move forward with my career

LIBS has given me a fantastic skill set different, but complimentary to my day job, that I probably didn’t realise or appreciate at the time. Running the events our with such a small budget and no track record, we acted like a start-up, we had to be entrepreneurs. Senior management within the bank were always very impressed when they saw what LIBS was doing and the scale of what we had achieved, something I feel gave me that ‘edge’ when moving forward in my career.

Personally, It gave me a great sense of belonging to a team. Sadly, being useless at sports, I had to substitute, and in a way LIBS was being part of a team. The board met most Saturdays and we had a great social life together too.

An open place to meet people

LIBS events have always been so open and welcoming. The topics and events are always really well pitched to be interesting to people from all backgrounds even when the subject matter appears to be more specialised. So it’s a great balance of getting to hear fantastic speakers but with a great socialising aspect too.

LIBS took it up a notch while still being very open and welcoming. As LIBS grew the events drew bigger name speakers but never lost the sense of being an open place for people to meet. LIBS events were getting such attention (media and otherwise) that, at one point, we became a platform for anyone who wanted to communicate about an issue to the broader London / Irish community.

Mark is a Director in TD Securities, the Investment Banking arm of the Canadian bank Toronto Dominion. If you’d like to contact Mark, you can connect with him on LinkedIn here.

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