Mark Wood, the chief executive and founder of pensions buy-out specialist Paternoster, has been approached by banks drawing up plans to break up insurance giant Prudential, reports The Telegraph .
It is understood Mr Wood - previously chief executive of Prudential UK and Europe - has been asked if he would be interested in running the UK division if the investment banks are successful in splitting up the £15bn company.
Sources said one scenario would see the division run as a separately quoted company, and tentative conversations had been held with Mr Wood in the past few weeks. It is unclear how this would impact on his role at Paternoster.
It is rumoured that Goldman Sachs could be one of the banks involved. It is a broker to Prudential but has not been mandated by the company to examine a potential break-up of the group. Both Mr Wood and Goldman Sachs were unavailable for comment.
FINANCE CHIEFS FROM THE G7 group of rich countries have warned that the global economy faces a period of slower growth as a result of the US mortgage crisis and projected the levels of the size of the sub-prime losses could be as high as $400bn (£200bn). They stopped short of agreeing on concerted action to stimulate demand, reports The Guardian.
In a statement issued after a day of talks in Tokyo at the weekend, the leaders said economic fundamentals remained "solid" but that downside risks remained. "The world confronts a more challenging and uncertain environment than when we met last October," the G7 said. "We will continue to take appropriate actions, individually and collectively, in order to secure stability and growth in our economies."
After the meeting, Peer Steinbrück, German finance minister, said the G7 was worried that the write-offs on US subprime mortgages could reach $400bn. This figure is significantly higher than the $120bn Wall Street and other financial institutions have revealed recently, and the $100bn which Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke suggested in testimony to Congress last month.
THE EMBATTLED FRENCH BANK Société Générale, recovering from losses incurred by the rogue trader Jérôme Kerviel, has unveiled its €5.5 billion (£4.1 billion) rights issue at a 39 per cent discount to the market price — far steeper than the 30 per cent expected by the market, reports The Times.
SocGen announced today that it would make a 1-for-4 rights issue at €47.50 a share, 38.9 per cent below the closing price of €77.72 on Friday.
The prospectus for the capital raising also revealed that its sub-prime losses are €550 million more than previously flagged at €2.6 billion.
However, the bank raised its forecast for 2007 net profit to €947 million, although this figure could be revised after its investigation into its rogue trading scandal that so far has cost the bank €4.9 billion.
It had previously forecast a profit of between €600 million and €800 million.
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