HSBC chief executive Michael Geoghegan has threatened to quit the bank should he not get the vacant chairman’s role.
According to the FT, Geoghegan reacted badly to suggestions that he may be passed over for the role, which became open following the announcement that current chairman Stephen Green is to take up a government job as a trade minister at the end of this year.
HSBC is set to decide the new chairman at a board meeting in Shanghai next Tuesday. Executives at HSBC says Geoghegan would be unhappy to see another chairman appointed above him, particularly ex-Goldman Sachs banker John Thornton, who has emerged as the favourite for the role. Other candidates include finance director Douglas Flint and non-executive Simon Robertson.
HSBC has a history of elevating its chief executive to chairman.
Geoghegan moved his job to Hong Kong last year and is thought to want Stuart Gulliver to be the new London-based chief executive should he get the chairman’s role.