Revolut hires top Metro Bank executive as finance chief

By Roger Baird on Tuesday 30 July 2019

Digital Banking

Revolut continues to beef of its key management posts as it comes under pressure to strengthen its governance amid rapid growth.

Revolut hires top Metro Bank executive as finance chief
Image source: Company supplied

 

Metro Bank finance director David MacLean has resigned to take the top finance role at digital challenger Revolut.

MacLean currently reports to Metro Bank’s chief financial officer David Arden, but in his new role he will oversee the finances of the rival online bank, which has almost six million customers, half of those in the UK.

He leaves Metro Bank at a difficult time, after last week posting an 84 per cent drop in profits following an earlier accounting error.

MacLean replaces Peter O'Higgins at Revolut who resigned in February, Steve Tryner has been filling in since then. MacLean is set to take up his post as chief financial officer at Revolut later this year.

 

Rapid growth

“We can confirm that David MacLean is leaving Metro Bank to take up a new role. We wish him every success,” a spokeswoman said in an email to Sky News who broke the story.

Revolut, which has a Lithuanian banking license, is one of the biggest names among European fintechs. Since its launch in 2015, the startup has attracted five million customers and raised more than $336m in funding, boasting a valuation of $1.7bn. 

However, the business founded by former Credit Suisse trader Nik Storonsky (pictured) and former Deutsche Bank systems engineer Vlad Yatsenko, is bidding to strengthen its corporate governance and customer service levels after rapid growth. 

In recent months it has lined up former Goldman Sachs Europe boss Michael Sherwood to join its board, while former co-chief executive Standard Life Aberdeen Martin Gilbert becomes chairman.

This year Revolut has faced questions from regulators over its money-laundering controls, recorded the highest number of customer complaints to the Financial Ombudsman Service for a digital bank, and taken potshots from former employees about a toxic work atmosphere as its drives for growth.  

 

Client withdrawals

Last week, Metro Bank reported pre-tax profit plunged 84 per cent to £3.4m over the first six months of the year, after it was forced to sell assets and upgrade internal controls following an accounting blunder in January.

The FTSE 250 bank said commercial clients had withdrawn £2bn of deposits after it revealed it had underestimated how much shock-absorbing capital it held, which led to a £375m cash call to investors completed in May.

It also said it had begun a search to replace its US chairman Vernon Hill. However, Hill, who co-founded the bank nine years ago will remain on its board as president.

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