Former Barclays banker Roger Jenkins has told a court that he exaggerated the role his ex-wife played in a crisis-era cash call in an attempt to save his marriage.
The banker’s success in securing the firm cash for a 2008 rescue deal was believed to partly rest on the shoulders of his former wife Diana, a key networker in their relationship who forged a crucial role in overseeing what she called “the Roger brand”.
His former wife is understood to have introduced him to the Qatari prime minister and the chairman of its sovereign wealth fund, Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim Al-Thani, when the couple were on holiday in Sardinia in 2007.
The relationship was vital for Barclays, which in 2008 secured a £3.9bn investment from Qatar.
However, Mr Jenkins said in court on Tuesday that he was “trying to save my marriage and as a consequence exaggerated her role” when he was discussing how to portray the deal with his PR in 2008.
When asked if his contacts really came from his wife at the time, he said: “No, I was going through a very difficult divorce and […] I am perfectly prepared to accept that I exaggerated her role in an effort to save my marriage.”
Mr Jenkins was viewed as the gatekeeper to Barclays’ relationship with Qatari investors and played a crucial role in securing their cash for a 2008 rescue deal which saved the lender from a state bailout.
He was handed a £50m exit package when he left the bank in 2009, the court heard on Monday.
Mr Jenkins is appearing as a witness in a case brought by financier Amanda Staveley, who claims she was treated unfairly when representing Abu Dhabi investors during the rescue and is suing Barclays for £1.6bn.
Ms Staveley’s client, Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, became the bank’s largest shareholder after contributing £3.5bn to the rescue deal.
The case continues.