Co-op Bank deputy chair resigned over opposition to Lloyds deal

LONDON Tue Jan 28, 2014 5:22am EST

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LONDON Jan 28 (Reuters) - The former deputy chairman of the Co-operative Bank said he stepped down because he opposed its plans to buy hundreds of branches from Lloyds Banking Group.

Rodney Baker-Bates told parliament's Treasury Select Committee that he considered the proposed acquisition to be a "giant step too far".

"I wished to resign because of my opposition to Verde (plan to buy 630 branches from Lloyds)," he said on Tuesday.

Co-op, which is owned by its members and has operations spanning banking, supermarkets and funeral services, was last year rocked after a 1.5 billion pound ($2.5 billion) capital shortfall was identified at its bank and Paul Flowers, former chairman of the bank, was arrested as part of an investigation into the supply of illegal drugs.