Robinson eyes finance job after Woolwich exit

Peter Robinson, the Woolwich chief executive ousted by the society three months ago, is set to return soon to a career in the financial services industry after finally agreeing a pounds 165,000-a-year pension compensation package with his former employers.

Mr Robinson said yesterday that he had received several offers from financial institutions and would be making a decision on which one to accept in the next few weeks.

"I am getting withdrawal symptoms at the moment and I have to make up my mind as to whether to get back to full-time activity," he said.

"My friends and business connections have been immensely supportive in the past few months and I now plan to concentrate on the offers that I have received."

Mr Robinson's comments came as details emerged of his Woolwich compensation package, negotiated on his behalf by top City lawyers D J Freeman.

Both the society and Henry Clinton-Davis, who represented Mr Robinson, yesterday refused to comment on the settlement. However, it is understood that in return for agreeing to forgo a claim for pounds 600,000 in relation to his two-year notice period, Mr Robinson, aged 54, will receive a pension linked to his 33 years service, with no penalty for early retirement. Based on his final pounds 300,000 salary, he can choose between a maximum annual pension of about pounds 165,000 or a pounds 370,000 lump sum, plus a reduced pension of pounds 135,000.

The agreement with Mr Robinson, who was forced to clear his desk after being accused of financial irregularities, comes as the Woolwich tries to regain the initiative and proceed towards its planned pounds 3bn stock market flotation next summer.