RBC unveils new forex structure

Mark Allen, European head of forex in London, and Rob Wittmann, foreign exchange sales and trading head for North America in Toronto, are now co-heads of global forex sales and trading. They remain in their current centres, reporting to Jim Archer-Shee, head of global treasury services in Toronto.

Archer-Shee and Gibbins have worked together for the past two years to bring a "sharper and more streamlined focus" to RBC’s foreign exchange and money market businesses globally, said a spokesperson for the bank in Toronto.

Meanwhile, Philippe Savoy, who previously managed RBC’s agency business in Toronto, has relocated to New York to become head of institutional foreign exchange sales for North America. He will also assume geographic responsibility for the New York desk’s overall forex activities. "This is an important appointment given the tremendous growth potential we see for this market generally," said the spokesperson. RBC has invested more than US$5.5 billion in the US over the past three years to strengthen its presence in retail/commercial banking, wealth management, insurance and capital markets, he added.

This follows the departure of Sue Strothman, New York-based head of corporate and institutional sales for the US, earlier this month.

Gibbins retired from RBC on December 31 last year after 25 years at the bank. He began his career in retail banking in 1980 but quickly transferred to RBC’s treasury group in Montreal. After spending time in London and Toronto, Gibbins relocated to New York in 1991 to take on responsibility for treasury trading and sales in the US, Latin America and the Caribbean.

Three years later he became head of FX for the Americas in Toronto (FX Week, January 24, 1994). In 1996, Gibbins and David Barnett were given joint responsibility for the globalisation of RBC’s forex business at the time of the merger between RBC’s treasury unit and RBC Dominion Securities to form the bank’s global trading unit. Gibbins took over sole responsibility for global forex in 1999 after Barnett’s retirement.

This latest news adds to changes to the forex structure made last year. Former co-head of forex sales and trading in London, Keith Dack, became head of the bank’s new proprietary trading strategy. At that time, head of continental European forex sales Francois Heritier, head of UK institutional forex sales Kris Dickinson and Marshall Bailey, who manages global central bank sales, all changed their reporting lines directly to Allen.

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