Garth Ritchie Parts Ways with Deutsche Bank after Two Decades

Ritchie’s departure has been long speculated on dismal results of his unit and after a shareholders' protest vote against him.

Deutsche Bank’s investment-banking chief Garth Ritchie, who was the highest-paid banker at the German lender in 2018, has agreed to quit the embattled banking group after more than 23 years.

CEO Christian Sewing, who is mid-way through a five-year restructuring plan, announced the news and thanked Ritchie for his lengthy career with Deutsche Bank.

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“Garth Ritchie has been a life-long employee of Deutsche Bank: highly engaged and committed and loyal to the firm. I would like to thank him personally for his excellent cooperation and partnership through his career and over the past 15 months as my deputy,” Sewing said.

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Ritchie’s departure has been long speculated for dismal results of his unit and after a large protest vote against him at the bank’s last annual meeting, where he won only 61 percent of the shareholders’ votes to renew his term. He came close to leaving Germany’s biggest lender last year after disagreements with the bank boss over job cuts, which was described as “tough cutbacks,” and Christian was concerned that Sewing’s plans could backfire.

Tough cutbacks set to bite

Job cuts could hit one out of every six full-time positions globally and may extend into 2020. Although formal numbers have yet to be announced, the German lender may eliminate as many as 15,000 to 20,000 jobs.

Germany’s biggest bank also faces pressure from investors to push ahead with further cost cuts this year and pull out of businesses where it isn’t profitable, especially after the collapse of merger talks with Commerzbank.

The 51-year-old South African banker is set to leave at the end of July after having worked at Deutsche for more than two decades. He originally joined the bank back in 1996 and ran securities trading globally before he was promoted to become the sole head of the corporate and investment business since 2018.

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