Scots-born Virgin Money chairman Jim Pettigrew set to retire

Jim Pettigrew is a well known figure in financial circles. Picture: Contributed
Jim Pettigrew is a well known figure in financial circles. Picture: Contributed
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Virgin Money has begun the search for a new chairman after Jim Pettigrew announced plans to retire next year.

The Scots financial industry veteran is to step down by September 2021 when he will have served nine years on the board, having been chairman of Clydesdale Bank-owner CYBG before 2018’s merger with Virgin Money.

In a short statement, Virgin Money said: “The board has therefore initiated a search process to allow time to identify his successor and enable an orderly handover.”

In November, Virgin Money posted widening full-year losses due to integration costs and an extra £385 million hit from payment protection insurance (PPI) claims.

The group, which has rebranded from CYBG since the £1.7 billion Virgin Money deal, posted statutory pre-tax losses of £232m for the year to 30 September 2019, against £164m in the previous year.

Its maiden results as a combined company showed that the bank was pushed deeper into the red by fourth-quarter PPI charges, as customers rushed to submit claims ahead of the late August deadline.

Chief executive David Duffy said it was “frustrating” to book the extra PPI bill but insisted the group has a “clear path” to return to statutory profit in the current financial year, despite tough retail banking conditions.

A re-branding programme will see the phasing out of the centuries-old Clydesdale Bank name, along with the Yorkshire Bank brand. Re-branded Virgin Money flagship branches are being rolled out.

READ MORE: Legal nod for CYBG rebrand to Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Money