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Thursday 20 June 2019


TSB CEO stands down after IT meltdown

Written by Hannah McGrath

Paul Pester, the chief executive of crisis-hit TSB bank, is stepping down with immediate effect as the company continues to battle IT failures which began in April.

Pester, who has led the challenger bank for seven years, has been heavily criticised for his role in a botched IT migration that left thousands of customers without access to online banking.

The announcement of his departure comes after customers complained of a weekend of disruption to mobile and online banking services following planned maintenance work on Friday evening. A statement posted on the TSB Twitter account apologised for the intermittent access to service yesterday.

Richard Meddings, current non-executive chairman of TSB, will take on the role of chairman with immediate effect, while the bank begins a public search for a successor to rebuild the bank’s reputation.

In a statement released this morning, Pester said the company had achieved real success in creating a bank which is truly consumer-focused and praised TSB partners for building the balance sheet to £31 billion.

He said: “The last few months have been challenging for everyone at TSB. However, I want to thank all my colleagues across TSB for their dedication and commitment during this period and for their focus on putting things right for TSB customers.”

Meddings said there was more to do to achieve “full stability” for the bank’s customers, but said IT systems and services were much improved since April’s IT migration.

He added: “Paul and the board have therefore agreed that this is the right time to appoint a new chief executive for TSB. Our goal is therefore to allow a full search to commence, without any distractions, enabling TSB to build for the future.”

The bank's tech troubles have drawn scrutiny on the impact for customers from members the Treasury select committee of MPs. Nicky Morgan, chairwoman of the Commons committee accused the bank of complacency and of issuing misleading communications, concluding that the committee had lost confidence in Pester's position as chief executive.

Ms Morgan said it was right that Pester had taken the decision to step down.

But she added: "The committee remains concerned about the continuing problems at TSB, including unacceptable delays in compensating customers who have been badly let down. It is to be hoped that Dr Pester’s successor is able to restore the confidence of the bank’s long-suffering customers."

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