Mon. Dec 6th, 2021

Barclays will appoint Paul Compton as sole head of the investment bank, the first step by new CEO CS Venkatakrishnan to stabilize the British borrower since taking over from Jes Staley this month.

Compton, who joined Barclays alongside Venkatakrishnan in 2016, was initially chief operating officer and last year was named global head of banking, overseeing the Mergers and Acquisitions Advisory and Capital Markets division.

The new role for Compton, an Australian and former veteran of JPMorgan, means he will also manage the trading, or markets side of the investment bank, people familiar with the decision said on Tuesday.

Compton and Venkatakrishnan were once considered competitors to succeed Staley – the two were appointed to each other in senior roles at the investment bank to “prove their ability” in September 2020. However, Compton decided to stay under Venkatakrishnan after missing the top post.

Internally, Compton told colleagues he did not want to become CEO and indicated this to the board about a year ago, according to people familiar with the matter. Announcing Venkatakrishnan’s promotion last week, Barclays said the board had identified him as the preferred candidate more than a year ago.

Last week was Staley forced to retire as CEO following a regulatory inquiry into the way he described his relationship with the infamous financier and sex offender, Jeffrey Epstein. He intends to challenge the conclusions of the Financial Conduct Authority’s investigation.

Venkat, as the new CEO is known internally, is also shrinking the 13 males executive committee of the bank to streamline decision making. Stephen Dainton, deputy head of the trade unit, will leave the committee, with possibly another member to follow, people familiar with the matter said.

Dainton will retain his senior position at the investment bank. Despite speculation about his future, eight-year veteran financial director Tushar Morzaria does not plan to leave, the people said.

Barclays declined to comment.

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