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Phoenix chairman Sandler to retire

Phoenix Group chairman Ron Sandler is retiring from the closed life company this year.

Sandler, who has been chairman of Phoenix since September 2009, will step down from the FTSE 250 firm once a replacement has been found and a handover period has taken place.

Phoenix has lost a number of senior members of its management team in recent months. Finance director Jonathan Yates left last December to join Guardian Financial Services and Lorraine Rees quit as head of investor relations in February.

Chief executive Clive Bannister says: “Phoenix has achieved a considerable amount under Ron’s leadership and our strong results are a testament to this.”

Sandler says: “I am proud of the way the Phoenix has performed during a challenging period, hitting our cash targets and substantially reducing the gearing ratio.”

He was previously chief operating officer of NatWest Group and chief executive of Lloyd’s of London.

He was executive chairman of Northern Rock plc between 2008 and 2011, during its period of public ownership and is a past president of the Chartered Institute of Bankers.

In June 2001, Chancellor Gordon Brown commissioned Sandler to carry out a review of the savings industry. The Sandler review was published in 2002 and called for a simplified range of savings products with a reduced level of commission.

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