Former Linklaters managing partner Davies leaves Lloyds amid management shuffle

Former Linklaters managing partner Simon Davies is leaving Lloyds Banking Group, with his departure confirmed as part of a wider restructuring of the bank’s management team.

Davies joined the bank in 2015, stepping down from his role at Linklaters a year early to become chief people, legal and strategy officer at Lloyds.

His exit will see chief financial officer George Culmer taking immediate responsibility for Lloyds’ legal and strategy teams, as well as Lloyds Development Capital.

A statement from Lloyds said: “Simon Davies, chief people, legal and strategy officer, who recently took a leave of absence from the group as his wife is unwell, has decided to leave the organisation.”

Group general counsel Kate Cheetham will attend the bank’s group executive committee meetings as part of the reshuffle, which also sees the bank’s executive director Juan Colombas take on a new role of chief operating officer as well as a host of other changes.

Davies was first elected as managing partner of Linklaters in 2007 and served two four-year terms in the role. His departure from the magic circle firm came as a shock to many partners at the time.

Commenting on the broader changes, Lloyds group chief executive Antonio Horta Osorio said: “The changes we are announcing today are fundamental to prepare the group for the next phase of its transformation under our upcoming strategic plan for the period 2018–2020. They are a key step to ensuring the continued alignment of the bank’s capabilities and strategy as a simple, low risk UK-focused bank with our customers’ evolving needs.”

Late last year Lloyds completed a review of its UK legal panel, with DLA Piper and Norton Rose Fulbright losing their places on the roster.

Cheetham led the review, which saw existing panel firms CMS Cameron McKenna, Eversheds, Herbert Smith Freehills, Hogan Lovells, Linklaters, Allen & Overy, Ashurst and Addleshaw Goddard retain their places.