Handelsbanken UK head becomes group president and CEO

Anders Bouvin, a 30 year veteran of Handelsbanken, has been named its new president and group chief executive, and will take up his position immediately following the departure of Frank Vang-Jensen from the role.

The Swedish bank’s board cited a “unanimous” decision to make the change following a period of analysis. Chairman Pär Boman said the decision was about individuals, rather than related to any performance issue of the group.

“Handelsbanken remains strong and our long-term goals stand firm,” Boman said.

He noted the group’s decentralised management of local bank branches as a factor both in the bank’s financial strength ratings, but also in terms of the most recent change of chief executive.

“All managers at Handelsbanken – particularly the branch managers – must have a very high degree of autonomy. Being the most senior manager at the bank therefore requires a special type of leadership – considerably more complex than traditional management. Thus, it is possible to be an excellent leader and manager – as Frank Vang-Jensen has been – but not fulfil the requirements of CEO of Handelsbanken,” Boman said.

Bouvin has been executive vice president at Handelsbanken since 2002. Most recently he worked as head of Handelsbanken in the UK for the past decade – considered one of the Swedish bank’s ‘domestic’ markets long with its Nordic ones, and where it has been growing a national branch network. Previously he has worked as branch manager in New York and as general manager of Handelsbanken Denmark.


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