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Barclays seeks to calm investors with Gillies move

Crawford Gillies: brings a wealth of experience. Picture: Neil Hanna

Crawford Gillies: brings a wealth of experience. Picture: Neil Hanna

  • by GARETH MACKIE
 

Scottish Enterprise chairman Crawford Gillies has been named the new head of Barclays’ remuneration committee as the bank seeks to calm shareholder anger over executive pay.

Gillies, who also serves on the boards of Edinburgh-based pensions giant Standard Life and outsourcing specialist Mitie, joins Barclays at the start of next month and will replace Sir John Sunderland as chairman of its pay committee.

Sunderland has come under fire after Barclays announced a 10 per cent hike in its bonus pool to £2.4 billion, despite a

32 per cent drop in annual profits to £5.2bn, and is expected to face criticism from shareholders at the bank’s annual meeting on 24 April.

Antony Jenkins, who replaced Bob Diamond as Barclays’ chief executive almost two years ago following the Libor scandal, said in February that he had turned down a bonus for 2013 because of costs incurred by the bank to deal with past problems and last year’s £5.8bn rights issue.

However, the group stoked controversy last month by awarding £32 million in shares to a dozen executives. Jenkins got £3.8m in relation to deferred awards from bonus and incentive schemes in previous years.

Shareholder advisory group Pirc has praised Jenkins’ decision to waive his 2013 bonus, but said investors should vote against the lender’s pay plans at next week’s meeting because of the increase in the overall pot and the “relatively lower financial performance of the bank”.

Barclays chairman Sir David Walker, said Gillies – a former chair of CBI London – “brings immense experience in a range of different industries, including the financial services sector, in addition to a background in strategy and the public sector”.

Gillies, a former European head of management consultant Bain, has chaired Scottish Enterprise since 2009. He has served on the board of Standard Life for more than seven years. Following the insurer’s annual meeting next month, he will be replaced as chair of its remuneration committee by fellow non-executive Lynne Peacock, the former boss of Clydesdale Bank.

 

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