Key hire ahead of IPO

RBS plunders Westpac NZ for Williams & Glyn CFO

Royal Bank of ScotlandRoyal Bank of Scotland has appointed Leigh Bartlett, chief financial officer at Westpac in New Zealand to take up the same role at Williams & Glyn, the new ‘challenger’ bank.

Mr Bartlett has spent four years as CFO at Westpac and before that held senior UK banking and corporate finance roles with RBS, Alliance & Leicester, PwC and KPMG. He  will join Williams & Glyn on 1 September, subject to regulatory approval.

He said he looked forward to playing a ‘leading role in building a vibrant UK challenger bank’.

RBS chief administrative officer, Simon McNamara said: “He brings with him a wealth of expertise and experience, from both here and abroad. He will play a key role as we move towards the launch of Williams & Glyn next year.”

The appointment of a key member of the bank’s top team comes just days after doubts emerged that RBS will meet the deadline for carving out Williams & Glyn. It is due to be floated at the end of next year. However, there have been concerns that time is short for what RBS chief executive Ross McEwan admitted this week was a “difficult piece of work”.

The European Commission ordered 300 branches are sold to create a new bank as a condition of RBS receiving state aid in 2009. The EC is thought to have raised the prospect of asking RBS to inject further capital and add more branches to ensure Williams & Glyn is of sufficient scale to compete.

Speaking before Tuesday’s annual general meeting Mr McEwan insisted that the plans were on track.

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