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Fremont General Names Ronald Nicolas as Finance Chief

(Corrects misspelling in headline.)

July 12 (Bloomberg) -- Fremont General Corp., whose loans to risky borrowers helped trigger the subprime mortgage crisis, said Ronald Nicolas succeeded Patrick Lamb as finance chief.

Nicolas's appointment was effective yesterday, Santa Monica, California-based Fremont said today in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Lamb, who's moving to an unidentified company, resigned June 9, Fremont General said.

Lamb was slated to be replaced by J. Randy Staff, the former financial adviser for Golden State Bancorp Inc., as part of the $80 million sale of a minority stake to a group led by billionaire banker Gerald J. Ford. That deal hasn't closed yet.

Jim Lucas, a Fremont General spokesman with Abernathy MacGregor Group Inc., declined to comment on whether Staff would replace Nicolas when the Ford transaction closes.

Nicolas, 50, joined Fremont General in 2005 as an executive vice president and chief financial officer of its banking unit. He also takes over as treasurer and chief accounting officer from Lamb, according to the filing.

Fremont's shares fell 10 cents to $10.50 in New York Stock Exchange composite trading today. They have slumped 35 percent this year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Vivek Shankar in San Francisco at vshankar3@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jeff Ward at jward@bloomberg.net

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