Appointment of Independent Non-Executive Director to Group Board

12 December 2013

Lord Myners appointed to Group Board as Senior Independent Director and to Chair Governance Review
The Co-operative Group announces the appointment to its Board of Lord Myners, who is taking up a new role as Senior Independent Director.  Paul Myners will join the Board with immediate effect and has also been appointed to Chair the Board’s current Governance Review, which is looking in detail at the Group’s democracy and includes consideration of how the Board is constituted and chaired.
In addition, the Group is currently looking to appoint two additional independent non-executive directors to further enhance the mix of skills and experience on the Board.
Paul Myners has been a senior businessman and public servant and brings to his new role extensive business, financial, governance, public policy and political experience. A former Financial Services Minister in the Treasury, Paul’s previous roles include Chairman of Marks & Spencer, Deputy Chairman of PowerGen, Chairman of The Guardian Media Group and Chairman of Land Securities. He is a member of the House of Lords and current roles include the non-executive chairmanships of Cevian Capital and Autonomous. In addition, Lord Myners is the former Chairman of the Low Pay Commission and previously undertook a review on governance of mutuals for the Treasury.
Ursula Lidbetter, Chair of The Co-operative Group, said:
“The appointment of Paul Myners to the Board marks a significant strengthening of our ranks. Our rules allow for the appointment of Independent Non-Executive Directors to strengthen the elected Board members, and now is the right time to make that move. We are delighted that Paul has also agreed to chair our Governance Review. We have made it clear that we need to modernise and to embed the very best standards of corporate governance – while also ensuring that the voices of all our members and customers resonate through the business. Paul is ideally placed to oversee that work given his extensive experience across business and public life.”

Euan Sutherland, Group Chief Executive of The Co-operative Group, said:
“I am delighted that Paul has agreed to join the Board and I look forward to working closely with him. He brings significant and valuable experience across a number of fields and will be a great asset as we work through the final stages of the recapitalisation of the Bank and move to take the wider Group to the next phase of its development. His leadership on the governance review will be crucial. I lead a dynamic, new management team and we have already started to make real progress on the important work of rebuilding the Group, having stabilised the Bank. What our customers, colleagues and wider membership base needs is an organisation and a business that they can be proud of again and I believe that Paul has a key role to play in helping us deliver that.”
Paul Myners said:
“The Co-operative Group is at a crucial point in its development. I am excited to be joining the Board at this important time. The Co-operative Group has a long and proud history at the heart of communities up and down Britain, with an extraordinary foundation based on customer ownership. It is a business with a strong brand and a loyal customer base, serving more than 15m people a week in more than 4,800 trading outlets. Right now it faces serious challenges in terms of business performance and ensuring that the right governance is in place to deliver in the interests of all its members and customers.  In my new role I look forward to working with the rest of the Board, with Euan and his new management team and to engaging with the membership. Together we will make sure that The Co-operative Group can realise its significant potential and properly capitalise on the huge opportunities ahead.”

For further information contact:

Russ Brady
The Co-operative Group
Tel: 07880 784442
Susanna Voyle
Tulchan Communications
Tel: 020 7353 4200