Barclays to conduct £6bn cash call without a finance director

Barclays will be conducting its £6bn cash call without a finance director after confirming Chris Lucas is to leave on Friday due to ill health.

Lucas had originally intended to stay until February but will now go at the end of the week. Barclays insurance policies will pay the 52-year-old £600,000 a year until retirement age at 65.

His intention to resign had been announced in February when it was said his health had been a factor in his decision but was not affecting his ability to do his job. But on Wednesday Lucas said: 'My health was a key factor behind my decision to step down which we announced in February. Whilst I had hoped to be able to continue working until early next year it is now clear to me that with my health as it is this will no longer be possible.

'I want to do the right thing by Barclays, my family, and myself, and therefore I have reached the difficult decision to step down sooner. I feel confident that I leave Barclays financially robust and well placed to continue to serve its customers, clients, shareholders and other stakeholders.'

His replacement as finance director, Tushar Morzaria, will not join until 15 October, by which time Barclays will be hoping to complete the £6bn cash call it is conducting to bolster its capital ratios. Antony Jenkins, the chief executive, will be the only executive director on the board until then and the bank sought to reassure investors by naming Peter Estlin, group financial controller as acting chief financial officer.

'Peter is deeply familiar with all aspects of the group's finances, including the capital raising. He will not join the board though will attend executive committee meetings,' the bank said.

Lucas joined Barclays in 2007 just before the banking crisis began. The bank has previously revealed he is one of four current and former directors being investigated by City regulators over disclosures made during fundraisings from Middle Eastern investors in 2008.

Last month, Barclays said the Financial Conduct Authority had informed the bank of its findings and said it was contesting them.

Jenkins was promoted to chief executive in the wake of the Libor-rigging crisis which led to the resignation of a number of senior executives. Sir David Walker, appointed as chairman following the Libor scandal, said: 'Whilst I am saddened that his health has forced this decision on him sooner than either of us would have wished I respect his decision and wish him well in the future.'

Morzaria was not originally due to join the board until February and had been expecting a four month handover period.

Powered by article was written by Jill Treanor, for on Wednesday 14th August 2013 08.40 Europe/London © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010


image: © Elliot Brown

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