Greensill Capital Paid Cameron Over $ 1 Million Per Year
David Cameron received a salary of over $ 1 million from Greensill Capital, the financial firm whose dramatic collapse exposed the former prime minister’s intensive lobbying efforts.
Two people familiar with the matter said Cameron received the big annual salary for his part-time advisory role, which included an increasingly desperate attempt to secure public funds for the struggling company. A spokesperson for Cameron declined to comment.
Cameron was hired to work 25 days a year as an advisor to the board, which means he was making the equivalent of over $ 40,000 a day.
His efforts to secure access to state-backed emergency coronavirus loans, first revealed by the FT, led the former Tory leader into Westminster’s biggest lobbying scandal since a generation.
When Cameron was dragged to MPs investigating the Greensill scandal in May, he said he received “a generous annual amount – far more than I earned.” [£150,000] as Prime Minister ”. He declined to disclose the exact figure, however, describing it as a “private matter”.
As the coronavirus pandemic swept across Britain in 2020, Cameron pressured several ministers and senior officials 56 times to try to secure Greensill’s access to two government-run emergency loan programs.
The former prime minister told members of the Treasury Select Committee that this relentless lobbying was not motivated by personal gain, but because he believed the company “had a very good idea on how to help grant loans to thousands of companies “.
When Greensill finally gained access to a coronavirus lending program for large businesses, he extended his full allocation of £ 400million of taxpayer-guaranteed loans only to businesses linked to Sanjeev Gupta – the tycoon of metals whose trading empire is now under investigation by the Serious Fraud Office.
Cameron’s salary made him one of Greensill’s highest paid employees, according to people familiar with the company’s pay scale. In contrast, the head of Greensill’s US division – a career banker with 25 years of experience – was making just over $ 400,000 a year, according to US bankruptcy filings.
Cameron wasn’t the only highly paid ex-politician on Greensill’s payroll. The finance company also employed former Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop as an advisor, paying an annual salary equivalent to more than $ 600,000, according to two people familiar with her salary. Bishop did not respond to requests for comment.
In January 2020, Bishop accompanied Cameron and the company’s Australian founder Lex Greensill to the World Economic Forum in Davos, where they proposed a flexible compensation package to then Australian Finance Minister Mathias Cormann. Australian authorities have rejected the program, however, describing it as “economically similar to payday loans”.
Cameron’s work for Greensill was extensive. Having joined the finance company in mid-2018, the former Prime Minister accompanied his Australian founder on meetings around the world with businessmen and politicians, young and old, often flying aboard the one of the company’s private jets.
It ranged from accompanying Lex Greensill on a desert camping trip to Saudi Arabia – where the couple attempted to seduce Crown Prince of the Gulf Kingdom Mohammed bin Salman – to meeting an underwriter in a obscure Australian insurance company, which was later fired for allegedly breaching risk limits. at Greensill Capital.
Cameron also offered Greensill’s services to a senior German government official in November 2020, just as an investigation into his German banking arm gathered pace. The bank’s management is currently the subject of a criminal investigation in Germany.
Cameron was about to take an even bigger windfall from the stock options he was granted when he joined Greensill, which at one point were worth tens of millions of pounds, but no longer worth anything.
Cameron called such a valuation “absurd,” but declined to disclose how much he could earn if Greensill was successful in going public.