Senior International Banker Philip Bennett named First Vice President at EBRD

By Anthony Williams

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The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development has named senior international banker Philip Bennett as First Vice President, in charge of all of the EBRD’s banking operations.

Mr Bennett will join the EBRD on 1 March 2013 after a distinguished career at Citigroup, where for more than 20 years he assumed a series of leading roles. He has an extensive knowledge of the EBRD region.

He will replace Varel Freeman who has held the position of EBRD First Vice President since 2006.

Mr Bennett’s appointment was the result of a competitive global selection process that considered over 850 potential candidates from many nationalities.

EBRD President Sir Suma Chakrabarti said, “Philip Bennett emerged as the standout candidate in an extremely strong and diverse field. He is an excellent banker. With his management skills and deep knowledge of the challenges facing the EBRD’s countries of operations, he will make a very powerful contribution to the Bank.

“Philip won the day after an intense competition and extremely thorough selection process that sets very high standards for appointments at this level in international financial institutions.”

Sir Suma paid tribute to Varel Freeman who will remain in his role until Mr Bennett takes up his position. “I would like to thank Varel for the leadership and skills he has brought to the position of First Vice President. With his keen instinct for sound banking, he deftly steered the EBRD’s investments as the Bank sharply increased financing in response to the global economic crisis.”

Seven candidates from Europe, North America and Asia were on a shortlist interviewed for the role of First Vice President by a panel that included both senior EBRD officials as well as eminent external experts with long experience in the financial industry and a close working knowledge of the EBRD.

Sir Suma made his final proposal from a shortlist of four.

Philip Bennett is a dual citizen of the US and UK and has more than 30 years of experience in the global financial markets, working primarily with Citigroup and its predecessor companies, Salomon Brothers and Salomon Smith Barney.

He has been working in London for the last 14 years. Most recently at Citigroup, he held the position of Vice Chairman, Public Sector in Global Banking, prior to which he was Global Head of Public Sector in the Global Corporate Bank. From 1998 to 2006, he was Head of International Capital Markets in the Fixed Income Division at Citi.

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