Barclays finance director Lucas to retire - sources
February 4, 2013 4:07 AM EST
Barclays Plc's finance director Chris Lucas is to announce on Monday that he plans to retire, people familiar with the matter said, as the British bank struggles to put several scandals behind it.
Lucas, in his early fifties, has been finance director for a tough six years that spanned the global financial crisis, but the past nine months have been particularly difficult.
He is one of four current and former employees being investigated by UK authorities regarding a capital injection by Qatar in 2008.
The sources said his departure was not linked to investigations into Qatar. Barclays declined to comment.
He is also the only one of Barclays' executive directors still in his post after the bank was fined $450 million (286 million pounds) in June for rigging the benchmark Libor interest rate.
New chief executive Antony Jenkins is attempting to move on from the bank's troubles, which also include the mis-selling of financial products, but that is proving a challenge.
The Financial Times reported on Friday that UK authorities are looking into allegations that Barclays lent Qatar Holding money to invest as part of the rescue fundraising four years ago.
UK rules forbid a public company from giving financial assistance in order to acquire its shares.
Barclays has appointed headhunters to search for a replacement for Lucas who will stay in his position until a successor is found, which could take up to a year, the two sources said.
He has had health problems and although that has not affected his ability to do his job, it influenced his decision to retire, one of the sources said.
He said Lucas told Jenkins and the board about his decision just before Christmas.
"It's a new era (and) he sees it as the right time to allow someone else to drive that new strategy," one said.
Chief Executive Bob Diamond, Chairman Marcus Agius and Chief Operating Officer Jerry del Missier all left last year following the Libor scandal.
Lucas, who joined the Barclays board in April 2007 from PricewaterhouseCoopers, was paid almost 4 million pounds for 2011.
Jenkins will unveil plans to streamline and revive Barclays on February 12 and has already said the bank will need to improve its culture and standards.
The CEO said on Friday he will not take a bonus for 2012, saying he should "bear an appropriate degree of accountability" for the difficult year the bank endured.
Jenkins and his chairman David Walker, are likely to be grilled on standards at the bank by parliamentarians when they appear before the UK banking inquiry on Tuesday.
(Reporting by Paul Sandle and Steve Slater; Editing by Erica Billingham)
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