Insurance head quits HSBC role

City A.M. Reporter
HSBC head of insurance, Clive Bannister, plans to step down at the end of March and will be replaced by Asia boss David Fried, in fresh evidence the bank’s focus is increasingly shifting to the east.

Bannister, who took the helm of the insurance business in November 2006, was previously chief executive of HSBC’s private banking business and before that, head of investment banking at HSBC Securities, overseeing the debt and equity securities business in the Americas.

Bannister, 51, said his successor would be an HSBC veteran of more than two decades, Fried, currently head of HSBC Insurance for Asia Pacific. He described the move as “early retirement” and denied he had failed to deliver on HSBC’s ambitious goals for its insurance arm.

Meanwhile HSBC is expected to pay over $1bn (£648bn) to keep its one-fifth stake in Bank of Communications (BoCom) after the Chinese lender unveiled a $6.1bn rights issue yesterday. HSBC owns 18.6 per cent of BoCom, which would require it to pay just over $1.1bn to maintain its stake. It declined to comment on its plans.