Former non-executive directors of HBOS have put out a statement condemning a report by the Financial Conduct and Prudential Regulation Authorities today, saying they disagree with a number of the conclusions.
In a statement from law firm Ashurst, former non-execs including Lord Stevenson, the bank's chairman between 2005 and 2008, said the report "downplays the unforeseen and unforeseeable effect of the financial crisis on HBOS".
The report, published this morning, suggested Stevenson, now a non-executive director at Waterstones, and other senior managers were ultimately responsible for its downfall. Stevenson could now face a wider investigation by the FCA, with the potential for a lifetime ban from the City.
The statement, on behalf of other non-exec directors including Carphone Warehouse founder Sir Charles Dunstone, Sir Ron Garrick, Anthony Hobson, Coline McConville, John Mack, Kate Nealon and Sir Brian Ivory, added that the report "acknowledges that its judgements have been reached with the benefit of hindsight. The report does not contain evidence that would justify any further enforcement action against executives".
"Equally, [the non-executives] understand the justified anger about what happened. The former chairman and chief executive resigned, apologised, waived contractual entitlements and lost their investments in HBOS.
"Their only wish now is that current and future bank boards learn to avoid the mistakes that they and others undoubtedly made."
|Where are they now? HBOS non-execs|
Lord Stevenson - Non exec at Watersones, president of Aldeburgh music, trustee at mentoring site Horsesmouth, chairman of trustees at MQ: Transforming Mental Health, chairman at the Doughty Centre Advisory Council, trustee at the Tate Gallery Foundation, director at Glyndebourne Productions, direct at London Music Masters - and "employed by Universal Music Group"
Sir Charles Dunstone - Adviser at Active Private Equity Advisory, chairman of TalkTalk, chairman of Dixons Carphone
Sir Ron Garrick - Retired
Anthony Hobson - Director at Weybourne Investments Holdings, director at Dyson parent company Holkham Group, director at Weybourne Management
John Mack - On the boards of Medley Capital, Tiptree Financial, Flowers National Bank, Incapital Holdings, Searchlight Minerals
Kate Nealon - Non-executive director at Argo Managing Agency
Sir Brian Ivory - Non-exec director at Arcus European Infrastructure fund, Pareto Investment Management, Shawbrook Bank, Marathon Asset Management, Insight Investment Funds Management, Insight Investment Funds Management Global
Source: FCA and PRA