Ermotti takes the helm at UBS as Grübel quits
Nikhil Kumar is The Independent's New York correspondent. He was formerly assistant editor on the foreign desk and has also done a variety of jobs on the city desk, where he wrote about markets, commodities and other business and economics topics.
Monday 26 September 2011
Sergio Ermotti, the new boss of UBS, has defended the Swiss bank as one of the "best capitalised" in the world as he attempts to shore up confidence after the $2.3bn (£1.5bn) rogue trading scandal.
The 51-year-old head of UBS's Europe, Middle East and African division was named the interim chief executive of UBS this weekend after the scandal led to the resignation of Oswald Grübel, the banking veteran brought out of retirement to turn the bank around after it was hit by sharp losses during the credit crunch.
After his appointment was announced, Mr Ermotti said: "We are aware that we are facing turbulent times externally and this latest incident is only adding much more necessity for us to react. But let's not forget that UBS is one of the best capitalised banks worldwide."
At the top his agenda is an internal investigation into the scandal, which should be concluded in 10 to 14 days, although external investigations might stop the bank from disclosing its findings. Britain's Financial Services Authority and the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority said they were launching an investigation into the scandal shortly after news of the trading loss broke in mid-September. The bank's board has also asked the new chief to speed up efforts to scale back its investment banking arm as it seeks to protect its core wealth management business.
Mr Ermotti, who joined UBS in April, said the moves would be outlined at a planned investor day in New York in November.
In a memo to staff after his appointment this weekend, Mr Ermotti, writing jointly with the Swiss bank's chairman, Kaspar Villiger, said: "There will be enormous challenges in the coming weeks and months and we are confident that we can realign UBS to deal with the new market environment facing the financial services industry."
Mr Grübel, who was appointed in 2009, said he did not "take the step of resigning lightly". In a message to staff, he added: "I am convinced that it is in the best interests of UBS to approach the future with a new leader at the top."
South Korea ferry passengers who were told to stay put 'got trapped' aboard sinking ship
Are beards attractive? Ryan Gosling says yes, but science says no. Take the A-list facial hair challenge and find out who's right
Andre Johnson: Wu-Tang Clan-discovered rapper severed his penis and jumped from LA building
Oscar Pistorius trial: Defence witness 'unqualified' to testify
Oscar Pistorius trial: Defence witness contradicts athlete's version in new blow for defence team
The food poverty scandal that shames Britain: Nearly 1m people rely on handouts to eat – and benefit reforms may be to blame
US Navy christens huge $3 billion destroyer ship USS Zumwalt that appears as a fishing boat on enemy radar
Scottish independence: It is the English who should be on their knees, begging the Scots to vote ‘No’
Nigel Farage fatigue? Half of voters ‘immune’ to Ukip’s appeal
Nigel Farage on Have I Got News For You: Ukip leader ridiculed over expenses and party 'fruitcakes'
Nigel Farage: I’m taking on the status quo, and the Establishment’s fighting back
- 1 Poveglia: 'World's most haunted island' up for sale...is anyone brave enough to buy it?
- 2 Babies cry at night to stop mothers procreating, scientists claim
- 3 24 people applied for the 'world's toughest job', here are their interviews
- 4 Andre Johnson: Wu-Tang Clan-discovered rapper severed his penis and jumped from LA building
- 5 Mrs Doubtfire 2: Robin Williams set to star in sequel to 1993 comedy
iJobs Money & Business
£150.00 per week: QA Apprenticeships: This company has been providing on site ...
£221.25 per week: QA Apprenticeships: This company is a well established Inter...
£40000 - £50000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Client Relationship Manager - SQL...
£35000 - £50000 per annum: Pro-Recruitment Group: Take your chance to join the...