Sir Philip Hampton, who has been chairman of Royal Bank of Scotland since 2009, is to leave the bank next year for the same role at GlaxoSmithKline.
RBS has already appointed headhunters Egon Zehnder to draw up a shortlist of candidates for the £750,000-a-year post, with former Standard Life boss Sir Sandy Crombie leading the hunt as head of the bank’s nominations committee. He is also considered a potential candidate for the job.
Chancellor George Osborne is likely to have strong say in the choice of new chairman given the taxpayers’ 80 per cent stake in the bank and his keenness to start selling some of that shareholding.
Crucially, Hampton will join the board of GSK in January but not become its chairman until September 2015.
That would enable him to continue to chair RBS until after the general election, ensuring a degree of continuity with a new government. Hampton replaces Sir Chris Gent, chairman of GSK for a decade.
His appointment comes two months after Britain’s biggest drugmaker issued a profits warning, and days after it was fined almost £300 million by China for bribery.Reuse content