Former Phoenix CEO to chair Rathbones

Former Phoenix CEO to chair Rathbones
 Clive Bannister, former CEO of Phoenix, is in line to become chairman of Rathbones

Clive Bannister is to become chairman of Rathbones as Mark Nicholls is set to retire later this year.

Rathbones announced today (January 12) it had appointed Mr Bannister as a non-executive director of the company, with plans to appoint him as chairman at the 2021 annual general meeting in May, subject to regulatory approval.

Mr Bannister was previously chief executive of Phoenix Group for nine years, retiring in March 2020. This followed a long career at HSBC Group, where he was appointed as CEO of HSBC Private Banking and group managing director of the Insurance and Asset Management division.

According to Rathbones, Mr Bannister would bring a “wealth of strategic, commercial and financial experience to the board”.

He also has non-executive director experience at the Association of British Insurers, Punter Southall Group, Unigestion and Ping An, and is currently chairman of the Museum of London.

Mr Bannister said: "I am proud to be joining the board of Rathbones, which is a fine institution with a long and distinguished history in a strong position to take advantage of future growth opportunities. 

“I am looking forward to working with the team at Rathbones, supporting them to achieve long-term success for the firm.”

Rathbones announced last year that Mr Nicholls would retire as chairman and director of the company and would therefore not be seeking re-election this year.

Mr Nicholls said Rathbones was a special company and it had been a “privilege and pleasure” to serve as chairman for the past 10 years.

He added: “I would like to congratulate Clive on his appointment and look forward to working closely with him to ensure a smooth handover.”

Paul Stockton, chief executive at Rathbones, said: “I would like to welcome Clive to the board, and I am very much looking forward to working with him as we take the business forward. 

“On behalf of all at Rathbones, I would like to give heartfelt thanks to Mark for his outstanding contribution throughout his tenure and wish him well for the future".

A trading update from Rathbones, also published to the stock exchange today, showed the firm’s funds under management and administration stood at £54.7bn as at December 31, 2020, up 9 per cent from the £50.4bn reported the year before.

Rathbones said this reflected positive market movements in the last quarter of the year as well as net inflows and strong investment performance.

Investors pumped some £2.1bn into the firm throughout 2020, up from £600m in 2019, and inflows accounting for 4.2 per cent of its funds under management at the start of 2021.

Rathbones said it remained focused on “enhancing” its services to clients and delivering growth, despite working against a backdrop of expected market volatility and low interest rates.

It said: “We will continue to balance this investment with prevailing market conditions, maintaining strict cost discipline and identifying inorganic opportunities that are a strong cultural fit.”