Neville Richardson announcement

July 22, 2011

The Co-operative Group has today (Friday 22nd July) announced that Neville Richardson has advised that he has decided to step down as Deputy Chief Executive of the Group and Chief Executive of its financial services business, Co-operative Financial Services (CFS) and will be leaving the Group later in the year. Mr. Richardson joined the Co-operative Group in August 2009 when CFS merged with Britannia Building Society, of which he was Chief Executive.

In making the announcement, Group Chief Executive, Peter Marks said: “In the past couple of years, Neville has successfully led the integration of CFS and Britannia Building Society, exceeding pre-merger targets and achieving record financial results. At the same time Neville has put in place strong foundations on which the Co-operative Group can continue to build its customer-owned, ethical alternative to the other High Street banks. We are grateful to Neville for all he has done at CFS and at Britannia in the preceding years and wish him every success in his future plans.”

Commenting on his decision to move on, Mr. Richardson stated: “It was always my intention to seek new challenges once the merger of CFS and Britannia was well advanced. That time has now come and I want to move on to the next stage of my career. I am immensely proud of what has been achieved at CFS over the past couple of years and am confident that I will be leaving the business in great shape to grow and prosper in the years to come.”

Barry Tootell, Chief Financial Officer at CFS, becomes Acting Chief Executive with immediate effect. Mr Tootell, 50, joined The Co-operative Group in 2008. Prior to joining The Co-operative, Mr Tootell was Finance Director for consumer banking within Lloyds Banking Group.


Notes to editors:

The Co-operative Group is the UK’s largest mutual business, owned not by private shareholders but by almost six million consumers. It is the UK’s fifth biggest food retailer, the leading convenience store operator and a major financial services provider, operating both The Co-operative Bank and The Co-operative Insurance. Among its other businesses are the number one funeral services provider and Britain’s largest farming operation. As well as having clear financial and operational objectives, the Group has also set out its social and sustainability goals in its groundbreaking Ethical Plan, which specifies almost 50 commitments in these areas. The Group operates over 5,000 retail trading outlets, including more than 2,800 food stores. In the next three years, it plans to add a further 300 food stores employing 7,000 people. The Group has more than 110,000 employees in total and an annual turnover of £13.7bn. Further information is available at


For further information contact:

Russ Brady
Head of Public Relations
The Co-operative Group
Tel: 0161 827 5856

Susanna Voyle
Tulchan Communications
Tel: 020 7353 4200