French bank SocGen names Soundardjee as Middle East head

DUBAI Mon Oct 21, 2013 6:02am EDT

DUBAI (Reuters) - Societe Generale (SOGN.PA) has appointed Richad Soundardjee to head its Middle East operations, replacing Eric Wormser who will take another senior position in the French bank, SocGen said on Monday.

Soundardjee, who joined SocGen in 1994, has been appointed the group's chief regional officer for the Middle East, as well as chief executive of Societe Generale Dubai, it said.

He was previously a head of capital markets at the bank, overseeing the Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa (CEEMEA) since 2009, the bank said.

In his new role, Soundardjee reports to Slawomir Krupa, chief executive for the CEEMEA region. In its statement, SocGen did not say what Wormser's new role would be.

SocGen is in the early stages of a drive to cut 900 million euros ($1.2 billion) in costs by 2015, as lenders across Europe set out new strategies to offset the impact of tougher post-crisis rules on risk-taking and the drag of weak euro zone growth.

The bank, which along with other French banks has enjoyed a share-price rebound over the past 12 months after a drive to sell assets and cut risk, saw its second-quarter earnings more than double after a surge in securities trading and a swing to profit at its foreign retail arm.

SocGen sold its Egyptian operations to Qatar National Bank QNBK.QA for $2 billion last year.

(Reporting by Dinesh Nair; Editing by Andrew Torchia)

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