Co-op Bank's first GC departs months after £700m rescue deal

The Co-operative Bank’s first general counsel Brona McKeown has left the bank just two months after the company secured a bailout.

McKeown, who was GC and company secretary, departed in October after joining in 2013 as its first legal head.

She will be replaced by the bank’s regulatory risk director David Bagley, who joined in 2014.

The news comes after the Co-op Group lined up a £700m rescue package of capital in August from hedge funds and other investors. In 2013, the bank almost collapsed after finding a £1.5bn capital hole, prompting it to hand over a 70% stake to private investors.

Allen & Overy advised the Co-op Group on the rescue deal, while Clifford Chance represented the Co-op Bank. Linklaters advised the Cooperative Pension Scheme and Paul Hastings acted for the existing bank noteholders.

A spokesperson for the Co-op Bank said: “Brona has been integral to the bank and the board through the variety of high profile and complex corporate and strategic events in recent years, culminating in the conclusion of the recent recapitalisation exercise.

“She has now decided it is an appropriate time to move on from the Bank. She left on 13 October with our thanks for a job well done and we wish her all the best for her future activities.”

Before joining the Co-op Bank, McKeown had been interim general counsel at Coventry Building Society for less than a year. Prior to that she held a number of roles at Barclays, most recently serving as global general counsel of its corporate arm. She joined the bank in 1998 after a six-year stint working for CMS Cameron McKenna.