Co-op Bank review slams Britannia merger and management structure

A review into the catalogue of failings of the Co-op Bank says that the organisation’s merger with the Britannia building society should never have happened.

The report, by top civil servant Sir Christopher Kelly, blames the deal for the Co-op Bank’s near collapse in 2013 as well as failings in management and governance at the Co-op “on many levels”.

The Co-op and Britannia both had serious problems at the time of the merger, which were exacerbated by the deal.

Sir Christopher said: “This report tells a sorry story of failings in management and governance on many levels.

“The roots of the shortfall lie in a merger between the bank and the Britannia Building Society which probably should never have happened. Both organisations had problems. Bringing them together exacerbated these problems. It might have worked if the failed management team had received first class leadership. Sadly it did not.”

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