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Morning Coffee: DBS boss Gupta tipped as potential new Stan Chart CEO

Standard Chartered Bank

Standard Chartered Bank

Reuters has identified a list of potential candidates to replace current Standard Chartered CEO Peter Sands. They are: DBS CEO Piyush Gupta, outgoing Westpac CEO Gail Kelly, National Bank of Abu Dhabi’s boss Alex Thursby, ANZ CEO Mike Smith and Antonio Horta-Osorio, CEO of Lloyds Banking Group.

Banking-sector “insiders” in Asia have told Reuters that Stan Chart shareholders are seeking a leader with a “deep understanding of Asia” and the ability to “speak head-to-head with US regulators”.

A Singapore-based headhunter we spoke with yesterday tipped DBS’ Gupta as Stan Chart’s prime candidate. His view was echoed by a senior Asian investment banker quoted by Reuters: “Piyush Gupta has to be in the mix, he ticks many boxes. He has quietly improved DBS’s performance and surely has Temasek’s blessings for the job,” said the anonymous banker. Singapore state investor Temasek is a shareholder in both DBS and Stan Chart.

Stan Chart employees in Singapore are likely to be pleased if Gupta does end up becoming their CEO Share on twitter, says the headhunter. He has led the bank since 2009 and has successfully managed  DBS’ expansion both locally and across Southeast Asia. His 27-year career at Citi, a key regional rival of Stan Chart, is also likely to tick many boxes.

Gupta has, however, told Reuters that he is currently focused on his job at DBS. Stan Chart is reported to be using several headhunting firms to search for a replacement for Sands, including Egon Zehnder.

Meanwhile:

Charles Schwab may be set to hire in China. The brokerage house is eying expansion there as it seeks to tap growing demand from mainland investors. (South China Morning Post)

Standard Chartered has appointed Singapore-based Aaron Russell-Davison as head of debt capital markets. (Business Times)

Nomura profits beat analysts’ estimates as investment banking surges. (Bloomberg)

Westpac sells some of its Pacific operations; focuses on Asia. (Sydney Morning Herald)

Nearly 14,700 foreign spouses are on long-term visit passes in Singapore. (Channel News Asia)

BOC Hong Kong is considering sale of $6bn bank unit. (Reuters)

State Bank of India hires 16 statisticians and economists. (Economic Times)


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