Former Prudential chief executive Nick Prettejohn, outgoing Phoenix Group chairman Ron Sandler and former British Bankers’ Association chief executive Angela Knight (pictured) have been tipped as potential candidates to chair the Financial Conduct Authority.
Executive recruitment firm Russell Reynolds Associates is handling the process to find a chair-designate for the FCA ahead of the transition to the new regulatory structure next year. It is currently putting together the list of final candidates.
Martin Wheatley, who joined the FSA in September from the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission, will become chief executive of the FCA.
Lansons director of regulatory consulting Richard Hobbs says: “Sandler has just declared he is stepping down from Phoenix and he did a previous simple products review for the Treasury, so he could feasibly take on the role.
“Prettejohn at one time chaired the FSA’s practitioner panel and has the required industry experience. Knight is leaving the BBA in the summer and said on leaving that she had ’one more job in me’ although this may not be the executive job she is after.”
Financial services barrister at 4 Pump Court Peter Hamilton believes Lord Leitch, currently chairman of Bupa and Intrinsic Financial Services and former chairman and chief executive of Zurich Financial Services, could be a possible contender.
Hamilton says: “Lord Leitch would be very good as he has extensive industry experience and was there when Hambro Life became Allied Dunbar and then Zurich. His background also means he understands corporate governance issues.”
Cicero Consulting executive director Mark Twigg says it will be difficult to recruit an FCA chairman.
He says: “The FCA’s remit is going to be much broader than the FSA’s. Knowing which issues to intervene in and why is going to take a lot of subtle political judgment.”