BOB Diamond he is not. Though Antony Jenkins yesterday claimed he gets the hard-nosed world of US banking, he’s a world away from his investment bank-obsessed predecessor who built BarCap out of next to nothing.
But right or wrong, a public and regulator pleasing chief executive is exactly what Barclays needs right now – a front man for rehabilitation following a summer bookended by scandal. From the reaction yesterday, it sounded like the bank’s investment arm is bracing itself for sweeping changes. But when the storm inevitably blows over shareholders will stop wanting a safe pair of hands and start demanding aggressive growth. With that in mind, Jenkins would do well to keep investment bank boss Rich Ricci onside – particularly as his part of the bank contributed more than £1bn to recent profits.
Ricci’s flamboyant suits and closeness to the former CEO might not scream reliability, but with Diamond and ally Del Missier gone he must be brought into the fold, or Jenkins risks losing the longer game.