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2/12/2009


BUSINESS LOUNGE The art of departure: A look at surprise resignations in recent years Andre Burnett - Your Money Reporter

T

he announcement of Christopher Williams’ resignation from the wealth management firm NCB Capital Markets (NCBCM) earlier this week has left most in the financial world wearing a look of befuddlement and trying to wrap their heads around such a move. The curiousity and bewilderment is totally understandable since Mr. Williams’ resignation comes on the heels of NCBCM reporting a 125% turnaround in profits from the previous year. One would expect that the bonuses and accolades that were sure to come Mr. Williams’s way would have been enough to guarantee a stay at the NCB subsidiary but apparently this is not the case. It shows some character on the part of Chris Williams in that he leaves at the top of his game like an athlete giving the performance of his life before gracefully bowing out rather than a year ago when the financial crisis was wreaking havoc. Whatever his endgame maybe Mr. Williams has certainly created a stir. Over the years there have been several other resignations which have come out of the proverbial blue to blindside pundits and others which may have been expected Chris Williams, departing but were still the talk Managing Director of NCB of the town. As recentCapital Markets Limited ly as last year, former Scotia Jamaica CEO William “Bill’ Clarke announced his early retirement after over a decade of prosperity at the helm. The move eventually turned into an acrimonious legal wrangling as Mr. Clarke took his former employers to court to challenge his retirement settlement. Mr. Clarke took up early retirement in November of last year mere months after reporting that Scotia Jamaica had netted profits of $4.7 billion in the first half of 2008. Whatever the issue was between Mr. Clarke and his former employees, you could bet the family farm that performance was not it.

Following Mr. Clarke’s exit from Scotia Jamaica there were several would-be successors who were tipped to take over from the 40 year veteran, chief among these was Minna Israel. Israel was then the head of the Bahamas division of Scotiabank but in a surprise move she stepped down to head up operations of rival bank RBTT in Jamaica. This coup of sorts came as a surprise to many as Minna Israel had seemed like a lifer at the Canadian based bank having been there for almost two decades. A resignation can mean exiting the game at a time that is of the most benefit to the person or it can mean a lack of options. Whichever the case might be our executives in Jamaica keep the field as interesting as ever.

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December 2, 2009

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