Scottish veteran steps down as Bank of Ireland chair



Veteran Scottish financial services executive Archie Kane is to step down from his role as governor and chairman of the Bank of Ireland this summer.

Mr Kane, 65, has been with the Dublin-based bank since 2012, having left Lloyds the year before after being among the board members who agreed to the fateful decision to acquire the ailing HBOS in 2008 ahead of its £20 billion taxpayer bailout.

It was announced in February that Mr Kane planned to leave his €490,000-a-year post at the Bank of Ireland this year and it has now been revealed that he will hand over to former chief executive of bookmaker Paddy Power, Patrick Kennedy, 48, who is the BofI’s deputy governor and has been a non-executive director since 2010, at the end of July.

Patrick Haren, the senior independent director at Bank of Ireland, which also needed a multi-billion-euro bailout from taxpayers after the financial crisis before returning to profitability in 2014, said: “ considerable experience and sound judgement have been of great assistance to the Bank through a challenging period.

“During his time as chairman and governor, Bank of Ireland repaid the Irish taxpayer, exited the Eligible Liabilities Guarantee and is recommencing dividend payments.”

Mr Kane, who is from Hamilton, South Lanarkshire, trained as an accountant and had a spell in telecoms before moving into banking in the 1980s with TSB.

In 1995 he was involved in the talks that led to Lloyds taking over TSB and he became director of operations and IT at the enlarged group.

He was appointed to run its insurance division, Scottish Widows, in 2003 and there also was a stint as chairman of the Association of British Insurers, the industry body.

In November last year he told the High Court that a note he had written in 2008 while at Lloyds that there was “no value left in HBOS” did not mean that he thought it was worthless.

He gave evidence as part of an action brought by almost 6,000 Lloyds shareholders who claim that the bank and directors did not reveal the true state of HBOS at the time of the acquisition.

The group is suing Lloyds and five former directors for almost £600 million.

The bank and the directors deny the claim.

Bank of Ireland was founded in 1786 and is one of the biggest banks in Ireland.