THE government confirmed that it had hired one of the City&rsquo;s top deal-makers yesterday &ndash; on an income believed to be no more than a tenth of what he earned at UBS. <br /><br />Robin Budenberg joined UK Financial Investments (UKFI) for a bonus-free, pension-free bargain salary of just &pound;155,000.<br /><br />Friends said the banker, who they described as &ldquo;thoughtful&rdquo; and &ldquo;creative&rdquo;, had been used to drawing a lucrative pay package at UBS but that money was no longer a driving force behind his career decision.<br /><br />One said: &ldquo;I can see him doing this, then going to the House of Lords in a flash, or to the Bank of England.&rdquo;<br /><br />Budenberg, a 25-year veteran of UBS that qualified as a chartered accountant with PricewaterhouseCoopers in 1984, has been responsible for leading the Swiss bank&rsquo;s role in advising the government on its bailouts of the British banking sector.<br /><br />His &pound;155,000 salary at UKFI &ndash; the vehicle set up by the Treasury to manage the government&rsquo;s stakes in banks &ndash; is a mere 8.4 per cent increase on the &pound;143,000 received by his predecessor John Kingman, who is leaving to join the private sector.<br /><br />But his new pay packet will be a sharp reduction on his compensation at UBS, which is understood to have effectively doubled salaries for top bankers earlier this year to compensate for restrictions on bonuses.<br /><br />Budenberg&rsquo;s first responsibility in his new role will be to manage the break up of bailed-out lender Northern Rock into a &ldquo;good&rdquo; and a &ldquo;bad&rdquo; bank, after the European Commission yesterday gave the green light to the restructuring plan.<br /><br />UKFI will now be tasked with channelling the Rock&rsquo;s retail deposits and healthy mortgages into the good bank, while the bad bank, will be responsible for winding down the toxic loans and will eventually be liquidated.<br /><br />In autumn last year, Budenberg &ndash; who lives with his wife and three children in a village outside Colchester &ndash; was part of a team of bankers that advised chancellor Alistair Darling on the &pound;500bn bailout of the banking sector. <br /><br />The workaholic and golf lover also advised on the nationalisation of lender Bradford and Bingley and the sale of British Energy to &Eacute;lectricit&eacute; de France in 2006.