RBS appoints Alison Rose as Ross McEwan’s deputy

Alison Rose could go on to be RBS's first female chief executive. Picture: RBS
Alison Rose could go on to be RBS's first female chief executive. Picture: RBS
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Royal Bank of Scotland has announced Alison Rose is to become deputy chief executive of NatWest Holdings (NWH), suggesting she could be a key candidate to become the banking giant’s first female boss.

NWH is RBS’s ringfenced holding company, incorporating the retail banking businesses for RBS, NatWest, Ulster Bank and Coutts.

In her new capacity, Rose will deputise for RBS chief executive Ross McEwan internally and externally, including at NWH board meetings, to “support the board’s oversight of the bank’s ringfenced business”. She will also lead “key strategic projects”.

Rose will take up the role on 3 December in addition to her existing position as RBS’s chief executive of commercial and private banking.

McEwan has previously said he has plans for RBS through to 2020, indicating that he will be staying with the bank until that time, and Rose’s appointment suggests she may be being positioned as an internal candidate to succeed him.

McEwan said: “Alison has been doing a fantastic job leading our commercial and private banking division and cementing our position as the UK’s biggest and best bank for business. Alison’s commitment and focus on our customers will also be a strong addition to board discussions and decision-making and this appointment is a reflection of that.”

RBS recently paid its first dividend in ten years following the agreement of a $4.9 billion (£3.7bn) settlement with US regulators over claims the bank mis-sold mortgages before the financial crisis.