Smith becomes executive director

Clydesdale edges closer to £2bn flotation after promoting CFO

Ian SmithClydesdale Bank took another step towards a £2 billion flotation today by promoting Ian Smith, its chief financial officer, to its board.

The move will put investors on alert for an announcement which was first trailed last summer when Andrew Thorburn became chief executive of parent company National Australia.

He made it clear this was a preferred option after years of dithering over the future of its UK assets, Clydesdale and its sister Yorkshire Bank.

Mr Smith, who joined Clydesdale on 1 November last year, currently serves on its UK executive committee and now joins the boards of Clydesdale and National Australia Group Europe as an executive director.

He was previously at Deloitte UK where he was financial services mergers & acquisitions leader and corporate finance partner. Prior to Deloitte UK, he was a finance director with Lloyds Banking Group and HBOS.

He is an economics graduate of Aberdeen University and a chartered accountant.

Debbie Crosbie, acting chief executive, said: “Since he joined the bank five months ago, Ian has made a significant contribution right across our business. His skills and experience are invaluable as we continue our commitment to build a better bank for our customers and we are pleased to announce his appointment as an executive director on our boards.”

Clydesdale and Yorkshire have 2.7 million customers and 330 branches.

The climate for bank flotations has improved in recent months and since Virgin Money revived its plans at the end of last year. It made a successful debut in November and Aldermore Bank joined it on the market last week. Shawbrook Bank, chaired by former RBS chairman and chief executive Sir George Mathewson, has also announced its intention to float.

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