ICI chairman leads hunt for Barclays chief

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The Independent Online
SIR Denys Henderson, the chairman of ICI, is to take charge of a search for a new chief executive for Barclays Bank, it emerged yesterday. The move follows a decision by Andrew Buxton, the chairman and chief executive, to bow to pressure from institutional shareholders to split his role, writes Peter Rodgers.

Sir Denys, a non-executive director of Barclays, is to chair a five-man sub-group of board members 'to progress the recruitment of a group chief executive from outside the Barclays group'.

A Barclays spokesman said there was no question of non-executive directors imposing the five-strong team on Mr Buxton, because it was a 'decision of Andrew Buxton and the sub-group reports to him'.

The search will be worldwide, including the US, Europe and the Far East, and non- bankers will be considered. 'Nothing is ruled out,' Barclays said.

At least one firm of headhunters is to be used. The bank would not put a time scale on the search but said a result was wanted as soon as possible.

Sir Denys is chairman of the remuneration and nominations committee of the Barclays board. The other members of the sub-group are Sir Derek Birkin, chairman of RTZ, Sir Peter Middleton, chairman of the Barclays investment banking subsidiary BZW and a deputy chairman of the group, Sir Martin Jacomb, another deputy chairman, and Sir Nigel Mobbs, chairman and chief executive of Slough Estates.