Metro Bank chair survives protest vote from likes of Royal London

Metro Bank’s chairman Vernon Hill has been re-elected despite opposition from activist shareholders such as Royal London.

Hill has received criticism from a number of major shareholders over payments to his wife’s company Interarch totalling £21m since Metro Bank’s inception in 2010.

The board at Commerce Bank previously ousted Hill from his former role at the US lender, amid similar allegations of lack of oversight over payments to Interarch.

Royal London Asset Management holds a £13.6m stake in Metro Bank, and was joined by investment adviser Glass Lewis last week in saying it would oppose Hill’s re-election at Metro’s annual general meeting this Tuesday.

Speaking on Radio 4’s Today programme yesterday morning ahead of the vote,  RLAM head of responsible Ashley Hamilton Claxton confirmed the company would vote against Hill’s re-appointment later that day.

However, the results show that Hill has been successful in his re-election bid, receiving 96 per cent of the votes cast, a higher proportion than last year.

The rest of the directors of the firm also received backing from more than 90 per cent of casting votes, and the director’s remuneration packages were also approved.

The votes came as Metro Bank unveiled its results for the final quarter of 2017, reporting profits of £10m, up from £8.3m and adding 88,000 new customers.

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