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Roberts to be Lloyds interim chief exec if Horta-Osorio is away longer than expected

Lloyds Banking Group says David Roberts will take on the role of interim chief executive if the return of group chief executive Antonio Horta-Osorio takes longer than expected.

On November 2, Lloyds announced Horta-Osorio was taking a short leave of absence on medical advice but would return before the end of the year.

Group finance director Tim Tookey is acting chief executive but is leaving in February to become chief financial officer at Friends Life.

Roberts joined the Lloyds board as a non-executive director in March 2010 and is chairman of the risk committee.

He worked at Barclays from 1983 until 2006, most recently as an executive director and chief executive of international retail and commercial banking. He was also chairman and chief executive of Austria’s second-biggest retail bank BAWAG PSK from 2007 to 2009.

Lloyds has announced that RBS head of restructuring and risk Nathan Bostock will not be joining the group, as announced in July, and is to stay at RBS.

LBG chairman Sir Win Bischoff says: “The board is pleased that Antonio is making good progress and we are looking forward to his return at the end of the year. However, it is important that we formalise the contingency arrangements if Antonio’s return is delayed.”

Chadney Bulgin mortgage partner Jonathan Clark says: “This news sends some very bad signals to the market and it is not going to doing anything to calm the jitters that already surround the group.”

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