John Hourican, 39, Chief Executive of Global Banking and Markets (GBM), Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), recently delivered his division's first profits since the 2008 global financial crisis left the bank reeling under losses. Excerpts from his interactions with BT's Anand Adhikari during his recent visit to India.
"The GBM performance—in the fixed income and equity businesses—was good in 2009. We have restructured all the aspects of our business to have a more focussed customer approach, and implemented a more stringent risk management framework in the business than perhaps we had in the past. We have tightened our balance sheet, and also have set a strategy around customer, product and geography.
I think the global environment will remain challenging in future. But when we look at Asia and India, in particular, there is a significant promise. India is set for a strong growth in 2010. We have kicked off a rebranding exercise with the transition of ABN AMRO in India to the RBS brand. We have a diverse product basket to offer with capital market solutions, hedging products and other advisory services that our customers need in these uncertain times.
We at RBS have chosen not to be in the commercial and retail side of business outside UK, Ireland and US. This decision was a clinical and appropriate one as we need to deploy our resources where we can be meaningful to our customers."