Bank for International Settlements names deputy as next GC

Dessislava Guetcheva-Cheytanova will replace retiring Diego Devos in September

The BIS’s round office tower in Basel, Switzerland Michael Derrer Fuchs /

The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) – often referred to as the central bank for central banks – has lined up deputy general counsel Dessislava Guetcheva-Cheytanova as its next GC, replacing incumbent Diego Devos who is set to retire.

Guetcheva-Cheytanova has been with the Basel, Switzerland-based bank since March 2020 when she joined as Devos’s deputy. She will take up her new role for a five-year term at the start of September and will provide advice to the board and general manager on all legal matters related to the bank’s activities. She will also take up a seat on the bank’s executive committee.

The BIS supports central banks around the world to maintain monetary and financial stability through international cooperation. It was founded in 1930 and is owned by 63 central banks from countries that together make up 95% of global GDP. The bank is currently managed by former Mexican central bank chief Agustín Carstens.

Commenters on LinkedIn said Guetcheva-Cheytanova’s promotion was “well deserved” and an “excellent appointment”.

Prior to joining BIS, Guetcheva-Cheytanova spent 12 years at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development as chief counsel. She also previously worked for the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe.

Devos, meantime, steps down after almost 15 years as GC at the bank. The BIS’s directors and general manager thanked Devos “for his outstanding service to the bank over the years” and helping provide legal direction during a challenging time for the global economy, which included the global financial crisis, the eurozone debt crisis and the Covid-19 pandemic. He also helped navigate various periods of transformation internally at the bank.

Devos initially joined the BIS in 2006 as deputy GC, before being elevated to the top job in 2009. Prior to his time at the bank, he was deputy GC at Euroclear Bank in Brussels and also a legal advisor in the National Bank of Belgium’s legal department.

Other recent financial services legal moves include State Street Corporation hiring Barclays GC Mark Shelton back in January. UK banking start-up All Africa Capital also hired the former GC of First Bank of Nigeria UK’s arm Lesley Wan in late November.

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