Peter Norris

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"Peter has over 35 years’ experience in investment banking and business management. He began his career at Barings in 1976. In 1984 he joined Goldman Sachs, returning to Barings in 1987 to head South East Asian advisory operations. Having returned to London in 1992, in 1994 he became CEO of Barings Investment Banking Group. Three months after his appointment, the notorious derivatives trading scandal in Singapore was revealed, which brought down the bank. From 1995, he established a corporate finance business, constructed around the needs of a client base of owner-entrepreneurs. In 2007 he merged this business with Quayle Munro Holdings Plc, an AIM listed company and became the CEO of the combined entity. He served in this capacity until the end of 2009, when he resigned his executive position to take the role of Chairman of the Virgin Group. He remains a senior adviser to Quayle Munro.

"Prior to becoming Chairman of Virgin, Peter had acted as an adviser to the Group from 1996 and had chaired Virgin Active from 2002 to 2007." [1]

"Peter Norris was portrayed by an actor in the film Rogue Trader, but in his new role as chairman of the Virgin Group the former Barings boss may have to do his own dramatics.

"Sir Richard Branson has appointed Mr Norris, 54, to head the board of Virgin Group, the holding company that owns brands such as Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Rail...

"Sir Richard stepped back from involvement in the management of Virgin two years ago. He now concentrates on strategy and publicity, leaving the running of the empire to Stephen Murphy, the chief executive, and a team of executives...

"The appointment of Mr Norris as chairman of one of the UK’s largest private groups confirms the rehabilitation of a career seriously tarnished by the collapse of Barings Bank in 1995. Mr Norris had been the head of Barings’ investment division when Nick Leeson’s derivatives trading resulted in losses of £827 million and the collapse of the bank. The events were retold in Rogue Trader, which starred Ewan McGregor as Mr Leeson and Simon Shepherd as Mr Norris.

"Mr Norris was accused of hindering investigations into Mr Leeson’s accounting, which he denied, but the Department of Trade and Industry banned him from holding a directorship for four years. Mr Norris instead became a consultant and worked with clients such as John Brown Publishing, which produced Viz, the comic.

"He met Sir Richard in 1997 and began to advise the Virgin Group on a series of acquisitions and disposals. His work with Virgin included the sale of Virgin Mobile to NTL, which created Virgin Media, and the sale of Trainline, a rail ticket business, to Exponent Private Equity. Most recently he worked on the Virgin Money proposal to buy Northern Rock.

"Mr Norris merged his consultancy firm, New Boathouse Capital, with Quayle Munro, a merchant bank, and became its chief executive two years ago. He is stepping down from that role and will be replaced by Andrew Tuckey, the former deputy chairman of Barings and another to have survived a DTI ban...

"Mr Norris began his career at Barings in 1976 and became the head of its corporate finance team in Singapore in 1987. He became chief executive of the investment banking group in 1994 — months before the bank’s collapse." [2]

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Related Sourcewatch


  1. virginstarsoftheyear Hosts, organizational web page, accessed April 4, 2013.
  2. Branson puts Barings man back in the limelight, Sunday Times, accessed March 20, 2011.
  3. Best for Britain Board, organizational web page, accessed July 1, 2018.