John Cryan is to take over as chairman of Man Group after Ian Livingston announced his intention to quit the world’s largest listed hedge fund group after less than four years in the role.
Mr Cryan, a former chief executive of Deutsche Bank, will take over as chair of the $114bn group on January 1, 2020. He has been an independent non-executive director on Man’s board since 2015.
Lord Livingston will step down at the end of the year. He said the decision to step down was “a personal decision and the right timing for the company”.
He also cited new governance rules in the UK that place a nine-year limit on board tenure, saying he wanted to give Mr Cryan “sufficient time in the role” at the FTSE 250 group.
It is the second boardroom switch at Man in less than a week. Jonathan Sorrell, president and an executive director, has stepped down from the board ahead of moving to an unnamed new employer.
Mr Cryan ran Deutsche Bank for almost two years between 2016 and 2018, having previously been co-chief executive. He was brought into the German lender to lead a restructuring plan as it battled poor profits and a number of legal issues.
However, he was ousted in April last year, two years before his contract was due to end, following a leadership crisis. Before joining Deutsche he worked for Swiss group at UBS for more than 25 years.
Mr Cryan was the unanimous choice of the board, Man said. He also chairs XCyber Group, a UK cyber intelligence company.
Paul McGinnis, analyst at Shore Capital, said Lord Livingston was highly competent but that Mr Cryan was a more natural fit for a financial business.
“The fact it’s now someone ex-Swiss and German banks is probably more what you’d expect a chair in asset management to look like,” he said.
Lord Livingston, a Conservative peer, has been Man chairman since 2016 and sits on the group’s remuneration and nomination committees. The former chief executive of BT and minister for trade and investment is well regarded by analysts but almost 9 per cent of votes cast at Man’s annual meeting in May were against his reappointment, the highest for any board member.
“Ian will remain a friend of the firm and, on behalf of everyone at Man Group, I wish him well in his future endeavours both in the corporate world and in the House of Lords,” said Luke Ellis, Man chief executive.
Man said in a statement: “During 2019, the nomination committee of the board has, consistent with its role and responsibilities, continued to review potential succession planning options . . . the nomination committee, and the board believe that an external search process would not deliver a more outstanding candidate than John Cryan as the new chairman of the company.”