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Scotiabank's global banking and markets chief Jake Lawrence to depart

Published 02/14/2024, 07:41 AM
Updated 02/14/2024, 09:30 AM
© Reuters. The Bank of Nova Scotia (Scotiabank) logo is seen outside of a branch in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, February 14, 2019. REUTERS/Chris Wattie/File Photo

By Nivedita Balu and Niket Nishant

(Reuters) -Canadian lender Bank of Nova Scotia said on Wednesday its chief of global banking and markets, Jake Lawrence, is leaving to take on a role at financial services firm Power Corporation of Canada.

Michael Kruse and Paul Scurfield will lead the team on an interim basis and report to CEO Scott Thomson, the bank said.

Lawrence's departure adds to a shake-up that the Canadian lender started under Thomson last year. The bank has also been grappling with industry-wide fears of a surge in bad loans as elevated interest rates increase chances of defaults by borrowers.

Under Thomson's leadership, the bank has replaced the head of Canadian banking, wealth management and international banking.

Lawrence, a two-decade veteran at the bank who was seen as a CEO contender, was awarded a one-time restricted stock as a retention bonus of $1.5 million after Thomson's appointment was announced in 2022.

He will be a strategic adviser to Scotiabank until he leaves in March to become to chief financial officer at Power Corporation of Canada, a holding company of the Desmarais Family.

Thomson and his team unveiled the bank's strategy in December, increasing its focus on North America and either exiting Central America and Colombia or growing that business without the use of more capital.

The global banking and markets team had etched out a strategy to focus on the United States and Mexico.

The segment accounts for about 18% of Scotiabank's earnings and serves corporate clients with lending and transaction services, investment banking advice in over 20 countries.

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