Bender was on holiday in Australia when a headhunter emailed to ask whether he would be interested in being an independent director of the LME.
His trip abroad meant Bender missed the opportunity, but this turned out to be a good thing; a few months later the headhunter was back, this time asking if he would consider being the LME chairman.
Fresh from a lifelong career in the British civil service, Bender was what he describes as a “slightly leftfield candidate” for the role.
The LME’s outgoing chair was Donald Brydon, who had been in the job for seven years until he resigned in 2010. Brydon had been pushing for the LME to have an initial public offering, but his efforts to change the corporate governance structure of the LME board had narrowly failed the prior year.
Brydon’s message to his successor was that the LME would never raise...