ZURICH, April 24 (Reuters) - Credit Suisse’s departing chief executive said an ambitious expansion drive following the global financial crisis ranked among his mistakes as CEO, as he addressed shareholders for the last time as head of the Swiss bank.
“I have certainly made my share of mistakes, as well,” Brady Dougan will tell the Zurich-based bank’s annual general meeting on Friday, according to prepared remarks released by the bank.
“In retrospect, for instance, I should have been more cautious about expanding the business early in the post-crisis rebound.”
Midwest-born Dougan initially won admiration for leading the bank through the crisis without requiring a government bailout — unlike cross-town rival UBS — but he has since faced criticism for his decision to retain a sizeable investment bank after Switzerland imposed stiff capital requirements.
This is in sharp contrast to UBS, which has cut back on capital-intensive investment banking to focus far more on private banking, or financial services for wealthy clients.
Tidjane Thiam, currently the head of insurer Prudential , will take the reins at Credit Suisse in June with expectations high that he will scale back the investment bank and ramp up its wealth management arm. (Reporting by Joshua Franklin; Editing by Mark Potter)