Co-op Bank hires CYBG’s Kerr to grow SME business

Manchester-based Co-operative Bank announced on Wednesday the appointment of Donald Kerr to the new role of Managing Director, SME Banking, as part of its bid to grow its presence in the business banking market.

Kerr joins Co-operative Bank from Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank owner CYBG, where, as head of SME Banking since August 2016, he led on growing the group’s SME capability, delivering digital improvements.

At CYBG he was also responsible for developing its business case for the forthcoming Capability and Innovation Fund initiative.

Previously, he spearheaded a phase of growth at Lloyds Banking Group, where he held managing director roles in commercial finance and SME Banking.

“The appointment follows The Co-operative Bank’s announcement in early November that it will apply to the Incentivised Switching Scheme, which forms part of the RBS alternative remedies package, alongside considering its options within the Capability and Innovation Fund,” said The Co-operative Bank.

Kerr will join Co-operative Bank in early 2019 and report to chief executive Andrew Bester.

Bester said: “I am delighted that Donald has chosen to join The Co-operative Bank at this important point in our development.

“Our heritage in providing banking services to small and medium sized businesses together with our recognised strong service culture provides us with a great platform.

“We want to significantly build on that and drive greater competition in the market using the strength of our ethical brand which is the reason many of our 90,000 SME customers choose to bank with us.

“Donald’s experience in leading successful business banking operations, and insight into the challenges and opportunities SMEs currently face will be valuable as we increase our focus and build our position in this market and I look forward to working with him.”

Kerr said: “I’m delighted to be joining The Co-operative Bank as it looks to grow its position in the business banking market.

“The need for greater competition in the market is well documented but should at last become a reality with the help of the RBS remedies package.

“That’s great news for Britain’s SMEs and I believe the Bank’s distinct ethical position means it has a strong role to play in delivering on that.”