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Peter Norris to chair Virgin

SIR Richard Branson has appointed Peter Norris, the former Barings boss, as chairman of the Virgin Group, the holding company that owns Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Rail.<br /><br />Norris, 54, as Virgin&rsquo;s first non-executive chairman, will oversee the management of the group.<br /><br />He will step down as chief executive of Scottish investment bank boutique Quayle Munro. <br /><br />The appointment marks the rehabilitation of Norris&rsquo;s career. He was head of Barings&rsquo; investment division in 1995 when Nick Leeson&rsquo;s derivatives trading led to the collapse of the bank with losses of &pound;827m and was accused of hindering a probe into Leeson&rsquo;s accounting. He denied the charge but the Department of Trade and Industry banned him from holding a directorship for four years.<br /><br />Mr Norris has worked with Branson since 1997 and has advised Virgin on a number of acquisitions and disposals.