Social climber: Lloyds’ chief Antonio Horta Osorio
Lloyds’ bronzed chief Antonio Horta-Osorio’s new-found social eminence is impressive.
On Monday, he and tolerant wife Ana held court at the Chelsea Flower Show’s exclusive preview.
The following day, they attended Prince Charles’s 70th birthday patronage celebrations at Buckingham Palace.
Should an inclusion in next month’s birthday honours materialise, stand by for Antonio’s wolfish grin to broaden an inch or two.
Re Lloyds, Noel Edmonds’ delightful hijacking of yesterday’s shareholder meeting, where he berated creaky chairman Baron Blackwell over the £1billion fraud at HBOS’s Reading branch which he says destroyed his business, was made possible after the bearded game show host, 69, purchased a single share in the bank.
‘The best 67p I’ve ever spent,’ Noel tells me.
Grizzled Standard Chartered chief Bill Winters must feel he’s trapped in Groundhog Day following rumours Barclays is interested in a merger, which presumably would put Barclays’ chief Jes Staley, 61, in overall charge.
Winters, 56, was previously head of the investment banking division at JP Morgan until he was abruptly sacked in 2010 while attending a client dinner in Rome. His replacement? None other than Big Jes.
Prudential’s chairman Paul Manduca, 66, will head the insurance giant’s international division when it splits next year from its UK and European businesses, meaning that the latter requires a separate chairman.
No word as yet who it will be, though I am advised that the successful candidate will almost certainly be female.
Advertising giant WPP was named the world’s most effective communicator for the seventh year running at this week’s Effie Awards, the industry’s Oscars.
Well deserved, I’m sure.
Just a pity the firm still refuses to fully articulate the reasons behind its long-serving chief Sir Martin Sorrell’s abrupt departure last month following personal misconduct allegations.