April 20, 2018 / 8:49 AM / a year ago

UK Government Investments appoints new head to manage Britain's RBS stake

FILE PHOTO: Royal Bank of Scotland signs are seen at a branch of the bank, in London, Britain December 1, 2017. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls/File Photo

LONDON (Reuters) - UK Government Investments (UKGI), the body which manages the government’s student loan book and its stake in bailed out bank Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS.L), said on Friday it had appointed Charles Donald as head of its financial institutions group.

Donald, who joins UKGI from Credit Suisse (CSGN.S) where he was vice chairman of UK advisory and corporate broking, will be responsible for managing and selling down the government’s 71 percent stake in RBS.

The government has said the stake sale is expected to commence by March 2019.

UKGI Chief Executive Mark Russell said Donald, who takes up his role in May, “brings long experience of financial institutions and capital markets, and I look forward to working with him as we continue to execute our mandate and build on the progress which has been made in the disposal programme.”

UK Financial Investments, a separate body which previously managed the government’s RBS stake, was folded into UKGI in March. Its CEO Oliver Holbourn also said that month he would stand down from the role he had held since 2013.

Holbourn had overseen the government’s attempts to sell shares in RBS and Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY.L), both of which were rescued during the 2007-9 financial crisis.

The government has sold its remaining stake in Lloyds, but it is still the major shareholder in RBS as a long-running investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice into the bank’s mis-selling of toxic mortgage-backed securities has delayed the share sale.

(The story was refiled to read “since 2013” in paragraph 5)

Reporting by Emma Rumney; Editing by Silvia Aloisi and Edmund Blair

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