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New board installed at Banco Espirito Santo as troubled family loosens grip on bank


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New board installed at Banco Espirito Santo as troubled family loosens grip on bank

On instructions from Portugal’s central bank a new board and chief executive have been installed at Banco Espirito Santo.

Vitor Bento, a respected economist, is the bank’s new chief executive.

The move comes amid fears that the lenders links to the financially troubled Espirito Santo family empire had unsettled international markets.

An audit of the family-owned holding companies behind Banco Espirito Santo found financial irregularities that raised the prospect of potentially destabilising losses at the country’s largest listed bank.

The news last week sent Portugal’s debt and stock markets into turmoil that spread to Europe as well as other firms in the Espirito Santo family orbit.

The new board replace Espirito Santo family members including patriarch, Ricardo Espirito Santo Salgado, who had already agreed to resign along with other board members loyal to the family.

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