“At this point, I believe the bank is on the right path and it is time for a new chief executive to continue the journey to be the digital ethical bank”, said boss Andrew Bester
Co-op Bank will need to appoint its sixth chief executive in less than a decade as Andrew Bester steps down after just two years in the job.
Bester, who was appointed in July 2018, was given a turnaround remit and under his watch the lender has split its digital offering from its parent company and has tried to find new backers.
The lender has been only 30% owned by the mutually owned Co-operative Group since 2013, when a group of private equity and hedge funds invested as part of a rescue deal.
In 2017 another £700mln rescue was needed and last year, the funds were reported to be looking for prospective buyers for the bank.
Bester said that it had been a “real privilege” to lead an organisation with “such a distinct brand, clear purpose and values”.
“My ambition was to complete the major transformation phase of the turnaround and for our franchise to show resilience.
“At this point, I believe the bank is on the right path and it is time for a new chief executive to continue the journey to be the digital ethical bank”, he added.
Bester will remain in post until his successor is found, the Co-Op said.
Chairman Bob Dench said: “We appointed Andrew for his significant expertise in delivering major transformation programmes and he has ensured that we have successfully completed the “fixing the basics” phase of our turnaround.
“The progress made provides the foundations for the bank to grow and to build a successful future.”