Bob Diamond poaches Barclays banker for African venture

 

Former Barclays executive Bob Diamond has poached a former senior colleague to become chief executive of his new African banking venture, Atlas Mara.

John Vitalo, currently chief executive of Barclays Middle East and North Africa, will join Atlas Mara once his departure terms have been agreed. At present he works from Barclays’ offices in the United Arab Emirates.

Vitalo, a former US marine, joined Barclays’ investment banking arm, Barclays Capital, in 2002 when it was run by Diamond, pictured. The two worked closely together on setting up the equivalent business, Absa Capital, at Barclays’ South African bank subsidiary.

Diamond said: “I am delighted that John has agreed to become Atlas Mara’s chief executive.

“I have worked with him over many years. He is a business builder, deeply knowledgeable in the critical areas of technology and risk and he is trusted by his colleagues and clients. I couldn’t imagine a better leader for this group.”

Barclays declined to comment on Vitalo’s poaching.

It came just a day after the bank settled a long-standing court case based on the Libor scandal which could have seen Diamond and other former senior executives called to give evidence.

Barclays reached an out-of-court settlement, restructuring a £70 million interest-rate swap it had arranged for Guardian Care Homes, which claimed that it had known about Libor rigging at the time.

Atlas also said that it had  signed a deal to take over the commercial arm of the Development Bank of Rwanda on the 20th anniversary of the genocide there. Diamond’s co-founder, Ashish Thakkar, was a refugee from the genocide.

Diamond and Thakkar put  $20 million (£11.9 million) into Atlas and raised a further $305 million through a placing on the London stock market in December.

The shares have since risen from 10p to 11.4p.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Recruitment Genius: Sales Assistant / Buyer

£15000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company offers a range of ...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Advisor

£15000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Advisors are r...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £45K: SThree: SThree were established in 1986....

Recruitment Genius: Compliance Manager

£40000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Compliance Manager is require...

Day In a Page

Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'
10 best statement lightbulbs

10 best statement lightbulbs

Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination
Wimbledon 2015: Heather Watson - 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Heather Watson: 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Briton pumped up for dream meeting with world No 1
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve
Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

Dustin Brown

Who is the German player that knocked Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?
Ashes 2015: Damien Martyn - 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Damien Martyn: 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Australian veteran of that Ashes series, believes the hosts' may become unstoppable if they win the first Test