UBS pays £17m 'golden hello' to the man who broke RBS

Andrea Orcel paid in cash and shares after being poached by the Swiss bank

UBS faces fresh outrage about banker pay after it emerged it has paid one of the men behind the disastrous sale of ABN Amro to Royal Bank of Scotland a Sfr25m (£17m) golden hello.

The payment to Andrea Orcel, the Swiss bank's new head of investment banking, comes in the year the firm was hit by record fines for Libor rigging.

Mr Orcel, who was poached from Bank of America Merrill Lynch to clear up in the wake of the Kweku Adoboli rogue trader scandal, received a cash payment of $6.4m and UBS shares worth Sfr18.5m to replace his previous bonus schemes.

The Italian whom some call the George Clooney of banking because of his good looks is seen by UBS as key to plans to repair the bank, which took the biggest state bailout of any European bank during the crisis of 2008-9.

While at Merrill Lynch he and another banker, Matthew Greenburgh, advised RBS's then chief executive, Fred Goodwin, on the takeover of ABN Amro, a deal that was largely responsible for RBS's implosion and its subsequent bailout by the taxpayer. He admitted in January that with the benefit of hindsight he would have advised RBS against the deal. "With what I know today … we would not have advised them to proceed," he told the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards.

UBS said in its annual report that Mr Orcel's payment was designed "as a replacement for deferred compensation and benefits forfeited by his previous employer as a result of his joining UBS", and that his cash and share payments are subject to future clawbacks.

Mr Orcel, 49, joined UBS as joint head of its investment bank last July and became sole head in November. He is overseeing a restructuring of UBS with as many as 2,000 jobs going this year as it reduces its investment banking activities.

Adoboli was jailed last November for fraud and false accounting. The bank lost more than $2bn, and its then chief executive, Oswald Grübel, resigned.

The new chief executive Sergio Ermotti's pay package went up from Sfr6.35m to Sfr8.87m. With a base salary of Sfr2.5m and bonuses totalling Sfr6.1m, he would fall foul of the recent referendum of Swiss people which could see such huge bonuses outlawed. The referendum decreed that all Swiss companies' remuneration packages must be put to a binding shareholder vote and could ban all golden hellos and golden parachutes.

Last year UBS suffered a bloody nose when holders of 37 per cent of its shares voted against the bank's compensation report.

UBS said it cut its overall bonus pool by 7 per cent for 2102 and that of its investment bank by 20 per cent to reflect the Libor fine. It also said none of its executive board members had been paid any part of their bonuses in cash and were all subject to clawbacks.

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?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

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

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

SThree: Experienced Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £40000 per annum + OTE + Incentives + Benefits: SThree: Established f...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE 40/45k + INCENTIVES + BENEFITS: SThree: The su...

Recruitment Genius: Collections Agent

£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company was established in...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE 40k: SThree: SThree are a global FTSE 250 busi...

Day In a Page

Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones
Theme parks continue to draw in thrill-seekers despite the risks - so why are we so addicted?

Why are we addicted to theme parks?

Now that Banksy has unveiled his own dystopian version, Christopher Beanland considers the ups and downs of our endless quest for amusement
Tourism in Iran: The country will soon be opening up again after years of isolation

Iran is opening up again to tourists

After years of isolation, Iran is reopening its embassies abroad. Soon, there'll be the chance for the adventurous to holiday there
10 best PS4 games

10 best PS4 games

Can’t wait for the new round of blockbusters due out this autumn? We played through last year’s offering
Transfer window: Ten things we learnt

Ten things we learnt from the transfer window

Record-breaking spending shows FFP restraint no longer applies
Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent