CEO of Caixa Geral ready to stay on until 2024

  • Lusa
  • 6 November 2020

Paulo Macedo has expressed his willingness to continue leading Caixa Geral de Depósitos (CGD) until 2024.

The CEO of Portuguese state savings bank Caixa Geral de Depósitos (CGD), Paulo Macedo, has expressed his willingness to continue leading the public bank until 2024, saying that “there is still a lot of work to be done”.

Macedo, a former minister of finance under the last Social Democrat-led government, was asked about whether he was ready to carry on, at the news conference held to present the bank’s results – a profit of €392 million for the first nine months of 2020, down 39% on a year earlier – at its Lisbon headquarters on Thursday.

“Yes, I am available, I think there is a lot of work to be done at Caixa,” said Macedo, adding that was natural that the public bank is prospecting for possible new directors.

“I think it was the Ministry of Finance that referred to resorting to [head-hunting firm] Egon Zehnder for one or two positions in the board,” he said. “It is a practice that I would say is normal.”

Last week, Expresso newspaper reported that Cristina Casalinho, the president of Portugal’s debt management agency, the IGCP, and Carlos Moedas, the former European commissioner for research, science and innovation, had been sounded out as possible CGD directors. The Ministry of Finance also confirmed that it was using Egon Zehnder to look for names.

Asked why he wanted to stay on at CGD, Macedo said that “there is an enormity of things to do to face the challenges” in the sector.

“We have a sector that will have stagnant revenues, namely in Portugal, where margins are falling and commissions are not expected to rise,” he noted. adding that “people want to go less and less to the branches and they want the convenience of doing all the operations remotely.”

He cited consolidation in banking at the European level as another challenge, arguing that “not only is there a willingness on the part of European authorities to have consolidation, but there is a search for synergies and lower costs.

“This leads to much larger banks appearing, as is foreseen here in Iberia,” he said. “They shift the balance and also make a certain type of scale have certain competitive advantages that other banks without that type of scale cannot have.”

Macedo has been CEO of Caixa Geral de Depósitos since 2017. His next term of office would run from 2021 to 2024.