Business Profile: Eric Daniels
Quiet American is breathing a little easier as Lloyds returns to profit
Wednesday 28 April 2010
Eric Daniels is the Marlboro Lights-smoking chief executive of Lloyds Banking Group who was breathing a bit easier yesterday after he said the bank had returned to profit. He also felt confident enough to forecast that the Black Horse won't be going into the red for the rest of the year. At least as long as the economy remains healthy.
The quietly spoken 58-year-old – who is the antithesis of the brash American banker – is a graduate of Cornell University and took over a company that had been disappointing for years. Lloyds had been sharply criticised for buying the life insurer Scottish Widows at the top of the market and then failing to integrate the company.
While predecessor Peter Ellwood had attempted to buy Abbey National and then searched fruitlessly for overseas deals, Mr Daniels changed direction, saying he would focus on organic growth. He sold off foreign operations – such as National Bank of New Zealand and the company's Latin American businesses – while keeping hold of Widows and focusing on maintaining the bank's substantial dividend.
Mr Daniels took some serious heat for his troubles, with critics arguing that his conservative, safety-first strategy was preventing the bank from capitalising on growth opportunities. However, all that changed with the advent of the financial crisis when it looked like Mr Daniels and Lloyds would emerge as big winners.
Until, that is, under government pressure, the bank agreed to rescue rival HBoS. Mr Daniels insists that the deal was "a good one" but most analysts agree that it is HBoS that is largely responsible for the bank having to call on £20bn of state funds and Mr Daniels' potential £6.2m package is causing ructions among shareholders.
- 1 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
- 2 Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
- 3 Satellite full of sexually experimental geckos adrift in space, Russia loses control of mission
- 4 Exclusive: Cameron’s ‘Big Society’ in tatters as charity watchdog launches investigation into claims of Government funding misuse
- 5 Israel has discovered that it's no longer so easy to get away with murder in the age of social media
MH17 crash: Investigators discover more human remains and 'huge section of plane'
Susan Sarandon on David Bowie romance: 'He's worth idolising'
Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
A day in the life of Vladimir Putin: The dictator in his labyrinth
Exclusive: Cameron’s ‘Big Society’ in tatters as charity watchdog launches investigation into claims of Government funding misuse
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: victims’ bodies bundled in black bags and loaded onto trains
John Barrowman praised for Commonwealth Games opening ceremony gay kiss
iJobs Money & Business
£600 - £650 per day: Orgtel: Conduct Risk Liaison Manager - Banking - London -...
£18000 - £23000 per annum + Comission: SThree: SThree, International Recruitme...
£280 - £300 per day + competitive: Orgtel: Test Analyst, Edinburgh, Credit Ris...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40,000: SThree: SThree Group have been well e...