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Friday, 28 April, 2000, 11:54 GMT 12:54 UK
The standard life of Fred Woollard
Fred Woollard
Fred Woollard: Not afraid to take on Standard Life
Australian-born Fred Woollard is the driving force behind the campaign to convince Standard Life members to vote for public flotation.

As head of the internet-based Standard Life Members Action Group, the former fund manager has been working full-time on the campaign for several months.



The lifestyle of Ferraris and yachts frankly does not interest me. I've got a Peugeot and fly easyJet

Fred Woollard
A resident of Monaco for the past decade, Mr Woollard now makes his living through private investments.

But he plays down suggestions of a glamorous lifestyle, describing his personal wealth as "sub-1m".

He lives in Monaco, he says, because he was offered a job there and liked it, and prefers spending time with his family to parties and casinos.

"The lifestyle of Ferraris and yachts frankly does not interest me," he said. "I've got a Peugeot 206 and fly easyJet."

Office boy

Analysing companies, stocks and shares has been Fred Woollard's passion since he was a teenager.

"I've always been interested in the markets and when something fascinates you, you continue to study it," he said.

His first job was as an office boy for a Sydney stockbroking firm, and he later took a break to study for a degree in economics, before returning to broking.

Share options

For eight years he worked as a fund manager and assistant to Australian tycoon Danny Hill, one of Australia's richest men with a 120m fortune.

During this period Mr Hill personally made AUS$14m through buying policies with free share options when insurers AMP went public.

The pair remain good friends and Danny Hill has offered financial support for Mr Woollard's bid if necessary.

Mr Woollard could get a 150,000 windfall through old policies if his bid succeeds, but insists he is not interested in money for its own sake.

He has public backing from Barclays Global Investors, and made a previous unsuccessful bid to force a members' vote.

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