Castlebay Team



David Ridland
Partner & Chief Investment Officer

I studied Modern History for my degree but from a young age was interested in investment.  Reading books like Buffettology and about other managers like Peter Lynch and Anthony Bolton, sparked a curioristy about investing that has endured.  Many cite Warren Buffett as their inspiration for investing, but I think Charlie Munger has played a pivotal role in Buffett's investing career. Charlie steered Buffett away from Ben Graham's 'cigar butt' investing to focus on ‘great companies at reasonable prices’.  This approach has had a profound influence on me in my career.

Founding Castlebay with David MacNeil provided an excellent opportunity to put into practice and develop my Quality value approach to investing.  Being a business owner has helped me become a better investor.

Michael Crawford
Chawton Global Investors and Castlebay investment committee

Whilst at University studying Law and Chemistry, I spent time with several investment firms and soon realised fund management was exactly what I wanted to do.  This caused me to divert from a legal career to pursue qualifications that would help me understand how a business worked; principally accountancy followed by an MBA. The latter was a revelation as I recognised the importance of corporate strategy, marketing, operational management and finance.  An elective in economic value added (EVA) led to Warren Buffett and his workings, followed by 25 years working as an analyst and fund manager. 

I established Chawton Global Investors in 2019 and manage the Chawton Global income fund. I am a member of the Castlebay investment committee and participate in the analysis of a number of UK and International businesses.

Cameron Gibson
Financial Planner

My first involvement with the Davids at Castlebay was as an intern for 8 months in 2018, where I worked on a range of projects focused on investment management. After making a move into financial advice to work alongside my father, Alastair Gibson, I later joined Castlebay Financial Management in March 2020. I then began to look after clients with their ongoing financial planning needs, while also working towards attaining Chartered status. 

I enjoy the varied nature of providing financial advice, listening to our clients and working alongside them to building a financial plan to meet both their short and long term goals. 

Maria Kassapi
Investment Analyst

My journey into the world of finance has been a captivating adventure, shaped by a foundation in mathematics and statistics that laid the groundwork for a fulfilling career. I embarked on my academic journey at Glasgow University, where I earned a degree in Mathematics and Statistics BSc. The rigorous curriculum and stimulating environment fuelled my passion for quantitative analysis and inspired me to pursue further specialisation in the realm of finance. 

Building on my academic background, I chose to pursue an MSc in Quantitative Finance, a decision that allowed me to deepen my understanding of financial markets and develop advance analytical skills. 

In October 2022, I began a new chapter in my career as a Junior Investment Analyst with Castlebay. Joining the investment team I embraced the opportunity to apply my quantitative skills to real-world investment scenarios. Working at Castlebay has been an enriching experience, allowing me to contribute to the success of the fund whilst continually expanding my knowledge of equity markets. 

John Poulter
Non-working Partner

I have worked in a variety of US based software companies throughout my career, ranging from start-ups with a small number of employees to multi-nationals with thousands of employees. Each business had a unique offering, which helped to deliver significant value to its customers. When we discussed establishing Castlebay, I saw similarities in the way both Davids wanted to manage their business and the assets entrusted to them by our clients - of which I am one.

Having known David MacNeil for many years, he described a way of investing which was different. I jumped at the chance to be part of a unique firm, in the investment management sector. Now, nearly a decade after our initial discussions, Castlebay is an established and growing business.

William Palmer
Compliance Consultant

I studied law at university and have worked in financial services for over 20 years, more than half of which has been spent specialising in investment compliance. I have an established regulatory career that has included the roles of Chief Compliance Officer (SMF 16) and MLRO (SMF17) for discretionary investment managers. A Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment, I have a range of industry qualifications including a Diploma in Investment Compliance as well as being a qualified investment manager. 

With a close alignment to Castlebay's values and purposes, I provide regular support to the firm's compliance function. 

David MacNeil
Partner & Compliance Officer

Investing and its influence has grown on me throughout the course of my career. I initially became involved in the world of investment by chance and thoroughly enjoyed a summer spent working in a stock broking firm before starting what would turn out to be my last year of University. Managing someone else’s money is challenging and rewarding in so many ways. It is also a great privilege. 

I have always been very interested in entreprenuership and before founding Castlebay developed relationships and friendships with people who had started their own businesses.  A seed was planted and before long the genesis of Castlebay was formed.  At our heart is a desire to be in partnership and manage our own money alongside our investors for the long term. A simple but effective alignment of best interests which is all too lacking in our industry.  

Pamela Simonis
Chartered Financial Planner

I have worked in the Financial Services sector for over 20 years. This has been with both large and small financial firms working through various positions to become a Chartered Financial Planner. I have gained experience and knowledge in a number of areas including pensions, investments and inheritance tax and understand that each client has their own individual aspirations and objectives. 

I joined the Castlebay team as I believe the 'purpose' and investment philosophy we use places the client at the centre of it all to build and enable long lasting relationships. 

Lorna Campbell
Chartered Financial Planner

I have come full circle to Castlebay Financial Management having grown up in Castlebay on the Island of Barra and feel a strong connection to this company and its ethos. 

I have worked in Financial Services for 20 years and for over 6 years I have been providing advice to clients as a Chartered Financial Planner. 

I am experienced in advice on Pensions, Investments, Life Cover and Inheritance Tax. 

Lesley McLeish
Business Support

I am delighted to have come to work with Castlebay Financial Management where putting clients' needs first is top of the list. 

I have worked within Business Support, supporting Financial Advisers for over 20 years. Lorna, Pam, Emily and I have worked together over many years, so we join Castlebay with the full team up and running! 

If you have any queries please contact me and I will be happy to assist you. 

Emily Barr
Business Support

I have been working in Financial Services since 2018 and was delighted to be invited to join the team at Castlebay in December 2023. I have worked in various financial advisory firms and during that time I have developed my financial sector knowledge in many areas. 

I am an organised, ambitious and positive person. I enjoy meeting new people and derive satisfaction from creating a structured office environment. I am looking forward to working with my colleagues to help grow the business. 

Alistair Mackintosh
Non-working Partner

After many years as a private equity investor, I was looking for like minded people to manage my public market investments when I met David MacNeil and David Ridland. It was quickly apparent that we shared a similar philosophy so when the discussion turned to establishing Castlebay, I was delighted to become both a client and Partner. 

How would I sum up the founding principles of the partnership? Looking after client money as if it is our own, first class levels of communication and a transparent, valued focused approach to costs.  We are focused on developing a business for the long term and each building block is vitally important.


Advisory Panel

The Castlebay Advisory Panel provides the opportunity for us to benefit from the skill and experience of three former fund managers with a different perspective. The panel also provides a corporate governance overlay to our Qualty value investment process.

The panel consists of the working partners and:


Russell Crichton

Russell retired as head of Rathbones Scotland in 2020 and was Chief Executive Officer of Speirs & Jeffrey for nearly a decade before it was purchased by Rathbones in 2018. Prior to joining Speirs in 1997, he spent the early part of his career as an institutional fund manager at Murray Johnstone and then Norwich Union.

Richard Burns

Richard joined Baillie Gifford as an Investment Trainee in 1973, becoming a Partner in 1977 and joint Senior Partner in 1999. He retired in 2006. During his time as a partner, Baillie Gifford grew its assets under management from £500 million to over £40 billion, becoming one of the leading fund management businesses in Scotland. In retirement, Richard has been a director of Bankers Investment Trust and EP Global Opportunities Trust and is currently Chairman of JP Morgan Indian Investment Trust, Mid Wynd International Investment Trust and Standard Life Equity Income Trust.

Mick Brewis

Mick retired as head of US Equities at Baillie Gifford in 2014 after spending 29 years at the firm.  Long term investment, conviction portfolios and eschewing the market noise & investing herd were all key ingredients to long term outperformance in the US, a market well known for being difficult to beat. 

Get in touch

If you would like to find out more please get in touch with the team.

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