Banco Santander has revealed on Friday new details about the frustrated signing as CEO of the Italian banker Andrea Orcel, who accuses of asking for more money from the agreement initially and of recording without consent private conversations with the president of the entity, Ana Botín.
The judicial dispute that the entity maintains with Orcel, former executive of Bank of America and Merrill Lynch and at that time member of the executive committee of UBS, has added a new chapter this Friday, after revealing the bank details of the negotiations held with the banker after the announcement, in September 2018, of its incorporation to Santander.
Less than four months later, in January of this year, the bank renounced the hiring, after verifying that it would have to assume the payment commitments of the banker's deferred salary in the next seven years, an unassumable price.
This was explained by the bank in a relevant event referred to the National Securities Market Commission (CNMV), which clarified that at the time of signing it was not possible to anticipate the final cost for the group.
At the beginning of July Orcel broke the negotiations with the bank and went to court to ask for the fulfillment of the contract or compensation of up to 100 million euros for damages and prejudices.
The Italian maintains that Santander breached a pre-agreement, which was reported by the CNMV, in which he was offered a signing bonus of 17 million euros and a salary similar to that of the current CEO, José Antonio Álvarez, about 10 million at year.
On this point, Santander emphasizes that said offer "never materialized and is not the contract required by law."
In order to compensate for the outstanding “bonus” of the Italian investment banker in his previous position as UBS executive, Santander was willing to hand over shares of the entity itself for a maximum amount of 35 million, although the idea was that this amount was reduced in the framework of the negotiation with the Swiss bank, which according to Orcel could assume half of that amount.
But the banker, said Santander in his pleadings brief, never intended for UBS to assume part of its incentives, although he asked the Spanish entity for help in drafting a letter that he would send to UBS urging the Swiss bank to assume half of deferred compensation, a letter that is not known to be sent.
Not only did Orcel not carry out these efforts, but he also increased his claims and expressed the need to compensate for a new and supposed compensation loss for his departure from UBS as a result of the non-perception of dividends and interest, which he estimated at about 3 million euros.
That is, not only did he not reduce the cost of his appointment but he asked Santander for more money during the hiring process.
Discarded signing, the bank shuffled different formulas so that Orcel could resume his professional career, even within Santander itself, which highlights that he always acted in good faith.
Orcel's reply, in a practice “of dubious ethical and moral quality for someone who intended to hold the post of CEO of Banco Santander,” was to record private conversations without the consent or knowledge of his interlocutors.
Something that confirms that the decision taken by the Santander council to withdraw from hiring the banker was the right one, says the bank, which has informed the judge of the case that it has evidence that shows that Orcel understood the decision taken, reports Efe.
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