European banking correspondent
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Sep 5, 2014

Bob Diamond’s Africa bank buys stake in Nigeria’s UBN

LAGOS/LONDON, Sept 5 (Reuters) – Atlas Mara, the
African investment vehicle of former Barclays boss Bob Diamond,
said it had increased its stake in Union Bank of Nigeria
to almost 30 percent for $270 million.

The deal marks the third significant acquisition by Atlas
Mara, set up last year by Diamond and Africa-based entrepreneur
Ashish Thakkar, as it seeks to build the firm into Africa’s
leading bank. It raised $300 million last month to add to its
acquisition war chest.

Sep 4, 2014

Barclays taps vein biometrics in bank fraud fight

LONDON, Sept 5 (Reuters) – Barclays is launching a
finger scanner for corporate clients and will roll out voice
recognition for millions of retail clients next year as it steps
up use of biometric recognition technology to combat banking
fraud.

The British bank said it has teamed up with Japanese
technology firm Hitachi to develop a biometric reader
that scans a finger and identifies unique vein patterns to
access accounts, instead of using a password or PIN.

Sep 4, 2014

Bob Diamond in talks to buy stake in Nigeria’s Union Bank-source

LAGOS/LONDON, Sept 4 (Reuters) – Atlas Mara, the
African investment vehicle of former Barclays boss Bob Diamond,
is in talks to buy a $275 million stake in Union Bank of Nigeria
, a person familiar with the matter said on Thursday.

Lagos-based UBN was established as Colonial Bank in 1917,
and from 1925 until the 1970s was owned by Barclays,
the British bank that Diamond led before being ousted under a
cloud two years ago. UBN’s market capitalisation is about $850
million.

Aug 26, 2014

Atlas Mara to re-list after $300 million fundraising

LONDON, Aug 26 (Reuters) – Atlas Mara, the
investment vehicle of former Barclays boss Bob Diamond
that is aiming to be Africa’s leading bank, will re-list on
Wednesday after raising $300 million and completing a pair of
acquisitions.

Atlas Mara said last week that it had closed deals to
purchase BancABC and ADC African Development Corporation and
would apply for the re-admission of its shares, which were
suspended when the deals were announced in April.

Aug 20, 2014

StanChart’s $300 million fine raises heat on board

NEW YORK (Reuters) – British banking company Standard Chartered Plc (STAN.L: Quote, Profile, Research) will pay a $300 million penalty and suspend or exit some important businesses after failing to weed out risky transactions that could be linked to money laundering.

The civil settlement announced on Tuesday by Benjamin Lawsky, the New York State financial services superintendent, came two years after Standard Chartered agreed to pay $667 million to a variety of U.S. regulators to resolve similar charges, including $340 million to Lawsky’s office.

Aug 19, 2014

Standard Chartered to pay $300 mln for oversight shortfalls

NEW YORK, Aug 19 (Reuters) – British banking company
Standard Chartered Plc will pay a $300 million penalty
and suspend or exit some important businesses after failing to
weed out risky transactions that could be linked to money
laundering.

The civil settlement announced on Tuesday by Benjamin
Lawsky, the New York State financial services superintendent,
came two years after Standard Chartered agreed to pay $667
million to a variety of U.S. regulators to resolve similar
charges, including $340 million to Lawsky’s office.

Aug 19, 2014

Lehman’s London staff win $300 mln pensions fight

LONDON, Aug 19 (Reuters) – More than 2,400 former Lehman
Brothers bankers based in Britain will have their pensions paid
in full after winning a six-year battle to receive their money
from parts of the collapsed U.S. investment bank.

The remains of the bankrupt Lehman group will stump up 184
million pounds ($306 million) so the pensions can be paid in
full under a deal brokered by Britain’s pensions regulator and
announced on Tuesday.

Aug 15, 2014

Exclusive: UK nears decision on whether to charge ex-Barclays bankers over Qatar – sources

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s fraud prosecutor could decide as soon as next month whether to charge former Barclays executives over undisclosed payments the bank made to Qatari investors in 2008, three sources familiar with the investigation said.

In a two-year investigation the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has interviewed former chief executives Bob Diamond and John Varley, former finance director Chris Lucas, former tax advisory boss Roger Jenkins and other Barclays staff.

Aug 15, 2014

UK nears decision on whether to charge ex-Barclays bankers over Qatar -sources

LONDON, Aug 15 (Reuters) – Britain’s fraud prosecutor could
decide as soon as next month whether to charge former Barclays
executives over undisclosed payments the bank made to
Qatari investors in 2008, three sources familiar with the
investigation said.

In a two-year investigation the Serious Fraud Office (SFO)
has interviewed former chief executives Bob Diamond and John
Varley, former finance director Chris Lucas, former tax advisory
boss Roger Jenkins and other Barclays staff.

Aug 12, 2014

RBS hands out $6 million of shares in ‘role-based’ pay awards

LONDON, Aug 12 (Reuters) – State-backed Royal Bank of
Scotland has awarded shares worth 3.5 million pounds
($5.9 million) to 10 executives under new role-based pay awards
it brought in to navigate limits on annual bonuses.

Executive pay at RBS remains under heavy public scrutiny,
with taxpayers sitting on a loss of nearly 15 billion pounds
after Britain pumped 45.5 billion into the bank to rescue it
during the 2008 financial crisis. The bank made a loss of 8.2
billion pounds last year.

    • About Steve

      "Responsible for overseeing coverage of the European bank sector and direct coverage of the international UK-based banks, based in London. Have been in current role for three years, and for previous three years was UK banking reporter. Have over 15 years experience as a financial newswire journalist in London and New York."
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