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CIMB CEO Nazir to Take Over as Chairman After 15 Years at Helm

CIMB Group Holdings Bhd. said Chief Executive Officer Nazir Razak will take over as chairman and relinquish his existing position after 15 years at the helm of Malaysia’s second largest lender.

A new CEO will be announced once regulatory approvals are obtained, the company said in a statement in Kuala Lumpur today. The changes will take effect Sept. 1. CIMB said it will also set up an executive committee of the board that will focus on key strategic matters and enhance oversight functions.

“CIMB has grown tremendously in scale and breadth in the last few years,” Nazir said in the statement. “It is timely that we institutionalize a more progressive balance between the roles of the board and management going forwards.”

The leadership change occurs at a time when Malaysian lenders are expanding abroad as the Association of Southeast Asian Nations further opens the region’s markets to create an economic zone modeled after the European Union by 2015. CIMB has stakes in Indonesian and Thai banks, and bought most of Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc’s Asia-Pacific cash equities and investment banking units in 2012 to extend its regional reach.

Chairman Md Nor Yusof will retire from the board of directors and join the company’s international advisory panel, CIMB said. Nazir will also be appointed to the board of Malaysia’s sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional Bhd.

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