SNIB making ‘progress’ but no mention of ex-CEO
The taxpayer-backed Scottish National Investment Bank has announced that it committed just under £200 million to growth businesses in its first year, but made no mention of the contribution of its former CEO who quit controversially earlier this year.
Since launch in November 2020 it allocated £194.4m to projects and businesses that align with its missions on net zero and equality of opportunity as part of total investment of £493.2m across 14 projects ranging from £1m to £30m.
Sarah Roughead, interim chief executive, said: “Considerable progress has been made in investing in innovative and scaling businesses”, adding that the bank is “well positioned to embed the strong foundations it has built and to deliver its strategic objectives and further mission-aligned investments.’’
Edinburgh-based travel booking business Travelnest is the latest company to benefit from the Bank’s support, receiving an initial £3m.
SNIB now has a staff of more than 60, with most positions filled.
There was no mention in the announcement of the contribution of former CEO Eilidh Mactaggart or progress in replacing her after she resigned suddenly from the £235,000 a year post on 27 January. Her departure was not made public until 25 February.
She later said ‘personal reasons’ were behind her decision to quit one of the highest paid publc sector jobs in Scotland, but questions continue to be asked including recent demands why she received £117,500 in lieu of notice. She had already received a £37,375 bonus on top of her salary.
In a letter sent last month to the Holyrood finance committee, chair Willie Watt said: “There can be many situations where an individual does not work through their notice period, yet it remains necessary to make a payment in lieu of notice, as required under the terms of an employment contract.
“I am not able to provide any further detail on this without divulging personal and confidential information, other than to confirm that this was such a situation.
“However, I would emphasise that there was no severance package, termination payment, settlement agreement, or confidentiality agreement, nor anything akin to those things.”
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