Barclays has announced that its CEO has been sacked. Antony Jenkins will leave the position after Barclays was handed the biggest bank fine in UK history in May after manipulating the foreign exchange markets.
Jenkins was promoted to CEO in the wake of the Libor scandal in 2012. He was lambasted in 2013 for stating that bonuses should be increased to avoid a “death spiral” of staff leaving.
He will depart on 17 July after a long-running row with the Board about Barclay’s investment banking side, The Guardian report.
Jenkins said, “It is easy to forget just how bad things were three years ago both for our industry and even more so for us. I am very proud of the significant progress we have made since then.
“Most of all, I am proud that we have defined our culture through a common set of values for the Group and that the progress we have made and the tough decisions we have needed to take have all been achieved by applying these values and by focusing on the needs of all our stakeholders.”
Sir Michael Rake is the Deputy Chairman at Barclays.
He commented: “I reflected long and hard on the issue of Group leadership and discussed this with each of the Non-Executive Directors. Notwithstanding Antony’s significant achievements, it became clear to all of us that a new set of skills were required for the period ahead. This does not take away from our appreciation of Antony’s contribution at a critical time for the company.”
John McFarlane will temporarily step up to fill the position of CEO. McFarlane was appointed as Chairman in September in an effort to rebuild Barclays’ relationship with its shareholders. He has been on the post since April.
McFarlane said: “Whilst it is unfortunate that I have had little time to work with Antony, I respect and endorse the position of the Board in deciding that a change in leadership is required at this time. I would add my personal thanks for everything that Antony has done for us. He can be proud of his heritage, especially his excellent work on culture and values that we will continue. I wish him well.”
He continued to say that the bank needs to become more efficient and “focused on what is attractive”.
McFarlane said: “We therefore need to improve revenue, costs and capital performance. We also need to become more externally focused and deal with the internal bureaucracy by becoming leaner and more agile. I have experienced good results in dealing with these matters elsewhere,” he added.
A press release stated that the search for Jenkins successor is underway and that the interim results will be announced on 29 July.
Colin Price, Chairman at Co Company, is critical about the Board’s ousting of Jenkins.
He said: "It seems shareholders often care far more about a company's short-term financial performance than the overall health of the organisation. This is a misguided view to take, and unhappily widespread: too many leaders still focus on delivering strong short-term financial performance over and above long-term robustness of the business, not that you can entirely blame them if that's what their job is perceived to be.
"Antony Jenkins' focus on the values and culture of Barclays was a crucial part of rebuilding trust in the organisation and Barclays have praised his achievements and promised to continue this work. It is important that they do so; changing the culture at the top is one of the most important things a company can do to drive growth and implement long-term success."