PracticeConsultingWeek ahead: Bank of Scotland finance chief to unveil annual results

Week ahead: Bank of Scotland finance chief to unveil annual results

Gordon McQueen has had a busy year as chief executive of accounting and finance at the Bank of Scotland and the David-like bid to take over the ailing English high street goliath NatWest.

The 53-year old Scottish ICA member, who also assumed the role of chief executive of treasury services in the restructured bank, was part of an unexpected raid south of the border on one of the UK’s largest financial institutes.

Next Wednesday McQueen will reveal the Bank’s full-year results after an eventful year in the history of the 305-year old institution.

The Bank of Scotland showed a bold and modern edge when it descended on Natwest in September, after the English bank’s share price plunged by a huge 26% following a friendly £10.7bn bid for UK unit trust and insurance company Legal & General.

McQueen and his colleagues took the Bank of Scotland to the brink of a massive coup that would have catapulted the venerable Edinburgh institute from relative minnows into the high street big league.

Aggressive neighbours the Royal Bank of Scotland entered the fray in November with a bid that rose to £22.6 billion and elevated the takeover into a bitter battle.

Shareholders at Natwest finally caved in the following month, but the Royal Bank of Scotland clinched the deal with its £21 billion bid.

It wasn’t just this display of corporate clout that thrust the bank into the headlines. There was also the embarrassing collapse of a high-profile telephone deal with controversial US TV evangelist Pat Robertson after he said Scotland was a ‘dark land’ overrun by homosexuals.

McQueen, who joined in 1976 the Bank of Scotland’s international division, oversaw more successful forays outside Scotland with a move into the Irish mortgage market that since August has raised IR£630 and the set-up of an on-line mortgage operation in Holland that boosts its on-line service to 500,000 customers.

With the damning Cruickshank review this year slamming high street banks for exploiting their customers, the next 12 months should continue to be busy ones for McQueen and the Bank’s top management.

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