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UBS Poaches Barclays’ Global Banking Chairman

By Mani
Updated on

Barclays PLC (NYSE:BCS) (LON:BARC)’s chairman of global banking unit Ros Stephenson is set to take up global role at Swiss lender UBS AG (NYSE:UBS), marking the latest senior departure from the U.K. bank.

Ms. Stephenson joined Barclays when the London-based bank acquired the U.S. operations of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc.

Series of departures

Ros Stephenson’s departure comes days after the British bank’s U.S. chief Skip McGee resigned and the same day its Asia chief Robert Morrice announced plans to retire. Ros Stephenson founded Lehman Brother’s financial sponsors group, worked as co-head of corporate finance and mergers and acquisitions at Barclays PLC (NYSE:BCS) (LON:BARC) from 2008 to 2013. She was named chairman of banking globally in October 2013.

Her more recent role was chairman of the investment banking division. But the U.K. bank has been moving to scale back its investment banking amid tougher new regulations and fallout from a rates-fixing scandal that led to the departure of Robert E. Diamond as chief executive. The London-based bank is expected to reveal its outlines for its newly reorganized investment bank next week.

Barclays set to announce ‘Bad Bank’

Earlier this week, Financial Times reported that the U.K. bank will announce the intended creation of a bank housing the sub-par returning assets from the investment bank and exit retail assets in non-UK RBB. Deutsche Bank analysts in their report note the IB is the key driver of profit decline for the U.K. bank, largely offset by the rest of Barclays PLC (NYSE:BCS) (LON:BARC). They point out that the investment bank is the driver of the yoy decline in adjusted profit versus a ‘resilient performance’ in non-IB businesses.

Citing Christopher Wheeler of Mediobanca SpA, Ambereen Choudhury and Elisa Martinuzzi of Bloomberg point out that Barclay’s losing senior professionals might imply some major changes at next week’s strategy update.

In a statement released today, UBS AG (NYSE:UBS) indicated Ms Stephenson will join the executive committees of the investment bank and the Americas starting in September. She is charged with bolstering UBS’s investment-banking capabilities, and in the Americas she will oversee client coverage, advisory work, financing origination and financing solutions.


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