British Business Bank plc appoints Keith Morgan as CEO

Press release 11 December 2013

  • £250m of resources for new small business programmes from Autumn Statement
  • Momentum building: £600m of finance now reaching businesses on an annualised basis
  • Confirms HQ location in Sheffield

The Board of British Business Bank plc has appointed Keith Morgan as Chief Executive Officer with immediate effect.

Morgan (50), who has played a key role in leading the planning and establishment of the British Business Bank programme since January 2013, was appointed following an extensive search process involving executive search firm Odgers Berndtson and a selection panel led by Ron Emerson, the recently appointed Chair of the British Business Bank.

In other developments, HM Treasury also confirmed in last week’s Autumn Statement that the British Business Bank programme will have £250 million of extra resources to develop new solutions to help smaller businesses get the finance they need, and the Board of British Business Bank also confirmed that the organisation’s HQ will be in Sheffield.

Prior to joining the Business Bank programme, Keith Morgan spent three years at UK Financial Investments where as a Board Director and Head of Wholly-Owned Investments he managed the shareholdings in Bradford & Bingley, Northern Rock and Northern Rock Asset Management following their bail-out by the taxpayer. Between 2004 and 2009 Keith held senior executive roles with Banco Santander Group including the development of retail and SME strategy in its US business, and as Director of Planning and Strategy at Abbey National in the UK. Before that, he worked at LEK Consulting for 18 years, specialising in financial services.

Getting the right CEO in place has been my main priority since my own appointment in October, and in Keith we have someone with very strong financial services credentials spanning both the private and public sectors at board level. He has already played a significant role in driving the progress made by the British Business Bank in the last 12 months, and I look forward to working closely with Keith on building an institution for the long term that makes a real difference to the SME sector. The £250 million of extra resources for new smaller business programmes from the Autumn Statement adds to the firepower we will have at our disposal to make a difference, and I very much welcome this vote of confidence in what we are doing. Ron Emerson
I am delighted to have the opportunity to lead and shape an organisation that will play a vital long term role in supporting UK economic growth. We will do this by tackling the market weaknesses that stop viable smaller businesses getting the finance they need. Keith Morgan

Following a review of where the British Business Bank should be located, the Board confirmed that it will continue to have offices both in London and in Sheffield, with Sheffield to be the organisation’s HQ.

Our decision to locate the HQ in Sheffield reflects that the majority of our staff are based there, and the majority of our Board meetings will be in Sheffield. Retaining offices in the two locations means that we continue to have access to the full range of skills and experience we need for long term success, as well as maintaining proximity to all our key stakeholders. Ron Emerson

Since it was launched, the British Business Bank programme has made strong progress in helping finance to reach smaller businesses:

  • Total lending and investment supported was up 65% for the six months to 30 September 2013 compared with the same period in 2012;
  • £600 million of new financing is now reaching smaller businesses on an annualised basis as a result of British Business Bank programmes; and,
  • 10,000 businesses have benefited from British Business Bank support in the last year. Last month, the first commitments totalling £45 million under the Business Bank’s £300 million Investment Programme were also announced, and these will unlock total financing of £125 million for smaller businesses. Allocated from the British Business Bank’s £1 billion of new resources announced in last December’s Autumn Statement, the £300 million Investment Programme was the first new programme launched by the Business Bank.

Notes to editors

  1. The British Business Bank will support economic growth by bringing together public and private sector funds to create more effective and efficient finance markets for smaller and medium-sized UK businesses. The Business Bank is a key element of the Government’s Industrial Strategy, and its programme is already contributing to making the UK the best place in Europe to start, grow and finance a business.
  2. The British Business Bank programme is currently run directly by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and is not authorised or regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority or the Prudential Regulation Authority. British Business Bank plc will operate as a Government-owned financial institution once HM Government has received European Commission state aid clearance, which is expected in 2014.
  3. Keith Morgan has been leading the planning and establishment of the British Business Bank since January 2013, working from within the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. Prior to this, Keith was formerly a Director and Head of Wholly-Owned Investments at UKFI, joining in 2009 to manage the UK Government’s shareholdings in Bradford & Bingley, Northern Rock and Northern Rock Asset Management.
  4. Keith joined UKFI from Banco Santander where he was a Director of Sovereign Bancorp in the US, focusing on Bank’s retail and SME strategy and the integration of Sovereign into Santander. He was previously Director of Strategy & Planning at Abbey National and a member of the Executive Committee, and also served as Chairman of Santander’s Asset Management and Credit Card businesses in the UK. Before joining Abbey in 2004, Keith spent 18 years at L.E.K. Consulting, where he was a partner specialising in financial services.
  5. Keith holds an MA in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from University College, Oxford and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
  6. A photograph of Keith Morgan is available upon request from the BIS Press Office.
  7. Mr Morgan currently receives an annual salary of £171,000 from the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills which will continue until British Business Bank plc receives EU state aid approval, expected in Autumn 2014. Once British Business Bank plc becomes operational, he will receive a package reflecting the following elements:
    • Base salary of £299,000 per annum; and,
    • An annual allocation of up to 50 per cent of base salary in respect of long term incentive arrangements, to be determined by the Remuneration Committee
    • Mr Morgan will not receive an annual bonus award.