Crisis-hit Co-op reveals 2013 loss of $4.2 billion

LONDON, April 17 Thu Apr 17, 2014 4:11am EDT

LONDON, April 17 (Reuters) - Britain's Co-operative Group made a loss of 2.5 billion pounds ($4.2 billion) in 2013, a year it described as disastrous and the worst in its 150-year history.

Co-op, which was hit by a 1.9 billion pound funding gap at its bank, a drugs scandal and an exodus of top executives, said on Thursday the results served as a wake-up call to the serious challenges that it faces.

"2013 was a disastrous year for The Co-operative Group, the worst in our 150-year history," Interim Chief Executive Richard Pennycook said in a statement. "Today's results demonstrate that but they also highlight fundamental failings in management and governance at the group over many years."

($1 = 0.5955 British Pounds) (Reporting by Matt Scuffham; editing by Kate Holton)