Virgin Money appoints Glen Moreno as new chairman ahead of anticipated flotation plans

Mr Moreno is chairman of the Financial Times’ owner Pearson

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The Independent Online

Virgin Money has named Glen Moreno as chairman to replace Sir David Clementi as the challenger bank prepares to float on the London Stock Exchange. 

Mr Moreno, who is chairman of the Financial Times’ owner Pearson, will join the bank in January, before taking over from Sir David in the middle of next year.

It is not yet clear how the plan will affect hotly anticipated flotation plans, and the bank refused to comment yesterday stating only that it would be dictated by “market conditions”.

However Virgin took a £26m charge as a result of a payment due to the Treasury should it successfully float the business between 2012 and 2016. That and other deductions left statutory pre tax profits at £6.7m.

Despite this, underlying finances are in rude health, with first-half profits before one offs of £59.7m, up from £13.1m the year before, when Virgin Money made its first profit since its deal to buy the “good” part of Northern Rock from the taxpayer. Total income rose 28.3 per cent to £210m.

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Chief executive Jayne-Anne Gadhia said the bank was close to announcing a partnership with an insurance provider, to enable it to offer a full suite of financial products through branches.

“This has been a really strong year for us by the end of this year we will have in place all the main product areas,” she said.

Mr Moreno shouldn’t cause any problems for watchdogs, having served as senior independent director of Lloyds Banking Group. He is also acting chairman of UK Financial Investments, which oversees the state’s stakes in banks.