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Sir Victor Blank takes government panel role

    The former chairman of Lloyds, Sir Victor Blank, will take an unpaid role as a government adviser on overseas investment.

    Sir Victor, who left Lloyds after its disastrous takeover of HBOS, will sit on the new Investment Advisory Panel, created by Business Secretary Lord Mandelson for government department UK Trade and Investment.

    The panel, which includes Dragon’s Den judge James Caan, is believed to have met for the first time this week.

    The advisory role is the first that Sir Victor, a former chair of Trinity Mirror newsgroup, has taken on since he resigned from Lloyds and was succeeded by Sir Win Bischoff.

    He left after UK Financial Investments, Lloyd’s biggest shareholders, said they would not support his re-election.

    A UKTI spokeswoman said Sir Victor had been a business ambassador for the government overseas since 2008.

    She said: "The panel is going to help the government take a systematic and strategic approach to relationship management with the leading companies investing in the UK.

    "They will advise on how government can strengthen its relationships with key potential investors, spot investment plans and secure them within the UK."

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