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LSEG chief financial officer Anna Manz to step down

FILE PHOTO: The London Stock Exchange offices in the City of London, Britain

By Sinead Cruise and Amy-Jo Crowley

LONDON (Reuters) -London Stock Exchange Group said on Thursday its group Chief Financial Officer Anna Manz would relinquish her role next year to take a similar position outside the financial industry.

Manz will remain in her job and serve as a member of the LSEG board until May 2024 as part of her notice period. LSEG Chairman Don Robert said the search for a successor to Manz, who has held the position since November 2020, was underway.

"Anna has made an outstanding contribution to the transformation of LSEG. I wish her every success for her next chapter," LSEG CEO David Schwimmer said in a statement.

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Manz, who joined the exchange and data analytics group from Johnson Matthey, succeeded David Warren after he retired. News of Manz's decision to depart LSEG comes just weeks before Mastercard Inc's Satvinder Singh joins as head of its data and analytics unit in July.

LSEG shares opened down 0.8% before recovering ground to trade flat, compared with a 0.38% fall in the benchmark FTSE 100 index.

Investors and analysts had expected Manz to play a leading role in accelerating the transformation of the company following its $27 billion acquisition of Refinitiv from the Thomson Reuters/Blackstone consortium in January 2021.

LSEG is pursuing a plan to buy back its own stock from the consortium, in a directed buyback programme expected to total 750 million pounds ($947 million) by April 2024.

The group is also continuing an on-market buyback programme, also expected to total 750 million pounds, with the latest transaction struck on Thursday, the group said separately.

In a note to clients on May 11, Jefferies analysts said it was likely the consortium would press ahead with a fresh placing of LSEG stock it is eligible to sell after its current lock-up expires on June 6.

"With interest levels in the stock building and our recent conversations suggesting considerable room for investors to add to positions, we would view this as a constructive event for the shares," the note said.

The traditional exchange activities of the LSEG, which pays Reuters for news, date back more than 300 years.

($1 = 0.7923 pounds)

(Reporting by Amy-Jo Crowley and Sinead Cruise, editing by Karin Strohecker and Mark Potter)