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Lloyds chairman Sir Victor Blank will step down

Lloyds Banking Group chairman Sir Victor Blank is stepping down from his post.

Blank, who joined the banking group as chairman in May 2006, is set to retire by the group’s annual general meeting in 2010.

Blank came under fire recently from shareholders after the bank merged with HBOS. As a result of the merger, the group was saddled with losses exceeding £10bn.

The board has appointed Lord Leitch, who becomes senior non-executive director at the forthcoming AGM, as deputy chairman with immediate effect.

Blank says: “I believe it is the right time for the group to appoint a new chairman. I will continue working until my successor is appointed to ensure the successful integration of the two banks. This remains – in the medium term – a unique value-enhancing opportunity.”

Lloyds Group chief executive Eric Daniels says: “Victor has played a very important role as our chairman during a period of significant change for our company and at a time when there has been unprecedented volatility in the markets. I look forward to continuing to work closely with Victor and to ensuring an orderly transition to an appropriate successor.”

Lord Leitch says the board was “unanimous” in wanting Blank to seek re-election as chairman for another three years. However, he says: “We are very sad about Victor’s personal decision to retire, although we respect and understand his reasons for it.”

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