July 7, 2020

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Standard Life Aberdeen appoints ex-Citi exec Bird as CEO

British asset manager Standard Life Aberdeen said on Tuesday that Keith Skeoch would step down as chief executive and be replaced former Citi executive Stephen Bird after five years at the helm.

The announcement marks the end of a 14-year career as director for Skeoch, during which he oversaw the merger of Standard Life and Aberdeen Asset Management and sale of the company’s life insurance business to Phoenix Group.

“With integration well progressed and having built significant balance sheet strength, this appointment launches the next phase of evolution aimed at developing and expanding the revenue opportunities available to SLA,” it said in a statement.

Bird will join the board as chief executive-designate on July 1 and Skeoch will serve out the remainder of his contract as non-executive chairman of Aberdeen Standard Investments Research Institute.

Standard Life said it expects the transition to take place the end of the third quarter, subject to receiving regulatory approval.

Bird most recently served as CEO of Citigroup’s Global Consumer Banking unit from 2015 to November 2019.

Prior to that he was CEO for Citigroup’s Asia Pacific business, including India and China.

“He is an inspiring leader with a great track record and experience in leading businesses to harness digital technology to improve both productivity and the client and customer experience,” said SLA Chairman Douglas Flint.

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