Stuart Lawson has been appointed chairman of the executive board of Soyuz Bank in what the company claims to be the first example of a foreigner running a Russian bank that does not have foreign capital.
His nomination represents an attempt by Oleg Deripaska, the politically-influential Russian businessman, to consolidate a range of financial assets he has acquired in recent years and create a regional bank with both corporate and private clients.
Mr Lawson, 50 this year, had previously worked for another of Russia's "oligarchs" - the oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky - as a director of Trust Bank and Menatep St Petersburg.
Soyuz has assets of Rbs40bn (£740m) and reported net earnings of Rbs570m last year. Mr Lawson said Accenture, the consultancy, had been studying the bank during the past three months, and he planned to hire a fresh team to help run operations - though without any other foreigners. "We will build a commercial, retail, corporate and universal bank with a regional presence," he said.
Mr Lawson has worked for Citibank in 10 countries during 25 years - in Moscow during 1995-97 and between 2000 and 2003 for the US Russia Investment Fund and Deltabank. Andrew Jack