Virgin Money beefs up executive team [Herald, The (Scotland)]
(Herald, The (Scotland) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) VIRGIN Money, Sir Richard Branson's Edinburgh-headquartered financial services challenger, has beefed up its executive team with hires from Royal Bank of Scotland and MBNA.
The company, which bought formerly nationalised Northern Rock in 2012, said it has recruited Lee Rochford, head of part-nationalised RBS's financial institution group for Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
The former banker at BNP Paribas, Credit Suisse and Wachovia Securities will become chief financial officer in October. Finlay Williamson will remain as Virgin Money's finance director.
MBNA board member Michele Greene will join Virgin as director of banking following its purchase of MBNA's pound(s)1 billion UK credit card book in January as a launchpad for its own cards business. She will also oversee the launch of its planned range of current accounts.
A spokeswoman said neither executive would have a permanent office but would move between Edinburgh, Newcastle, Norwich and London.
Virgin chief executive Jayne-Anne Gadhia said: "Lee brings enormous experience of the financial markets and this will be critical to us in the coming years and Michele joins us as director of banking, with responsibility for credit cards and current accounts - two key markets for us as we continue to build the Virgin Money of the future."
Sir Richard is expected to seek a stock market flotation for the business which could value it at between pound(s)1.5bn and pound(s)2bn.
In a recent trading update, Virgin Money, which has around five million customers, said it had returned to profitable monthly trading and expected to report an underlying profit for 2013.
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