UPDATE 1-CIBC wealth unit chief to succeed CEO in September

Thu Jul 31, 2014 2:03pm EDT
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(Adds quotes, details on new and old CEOs, background on other banks)

By Cameron French

TORONTO, July 31 (Reuters) - Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce has named wealth management head Victor Dodig as its next president and chief executive, replacing Gerry McCaughey who will retire in September.

The changing of the guard at Canada's fifth-largest bank announced on Thursday follows recent succession moves at larger rivals Royal Bank of Canada, Toronto-Dominion Bank and Bank of Nova Scotia, as the generation that took the reins of the country's lenders in the early-to-mid 2000s makes way for new blood.

Dodig, 49, joined CIBC in 2005 and has been group head of wealth management since 2011. Before that, he was an executive at UBS Global Asset Management.

Dodig has "demonstrated his ability to complement CIBC's organic growth plan with acquisitions and investments that align to the bank's risk profile," CIBC Chairman Charles Sirois said in a statement.

McCaughey, 58, said earlier this year he planned to retire by April 2016, but noted that the actual date would be finalized after a new CEO was selected.

Dodig and CIBC retail banking head David Williamson were seen as the most likely internal candidates for the CEO job.

But the fact that the bank announced McCaughey's departure before naming a successor suggested that others were being considered, said Tom Lewandowski, an analyst at Edward Jones in St. Louis. "The thought here was that it as going to come from outside."   Continued...