THE Chairman of Spanish bank Santander has died this morning at the age of 79.
Emilio Botín, who joined the bank’s board in 1960, died in Madrid during the early hours of Wednesday morning following a suspected heart attack.
A statement has been sent to Spain’s national market commission (Comisión Nacional del Mercado de Valores – CNMV). The statement reads: “The Bank of Santander regrets to announce the death of its chairman Emilio Botín.
“A meeting will be held today in order to select a new chairman.”
The banking group’s market shares dropped by 1.7 per cent as the news of his death broke.
Botín has been widely credited for transforming Santander from a local bank to its current status as an international banking giant.
He studied law and economics at university and joined the bank when he was 24-years-old in 1958.
The chairman’s body is due to be moved to Santander, the city of his birth, later on today. He leaves behind a wife and six children.