DUBLIN, July 14 State-owned Allied Irish Banks
(AIB) appointed the chairman of Britain's Co-operative
Bank Richard Pym as its next chairman on Monday ahead of a
potential reprivatisation next year.
Pym, who is also chairman of UK Asset Resolution (UKAR),
Britain's "bad bank" which is winding down the loans of Northern
Rock and Bradford & Bingley, will take over from former HSBC
executive David Hodgkinson in October.
Hodgkinson was drafted into the bank in October 2010, two
months before Ireland entered an EU/IMF bailout that sought to
clean up the country's banks after years of reckless lending in
the sector was exposed by a devastating property crash.
AIB has cost taxpayers more than 20 billion euros, the most
given to any lender that survived Ireland's debt crisis, but it
returned to profit in the first quarter of 2014 after a
cost-cutting drive led by Hodgkinson and Chief Executive David
Duffy said last month that he would remain as CEO of the
bank after signing a permanent contract.
Pym, who had already said he would step down from his role
at the Co-op bank this year, was chief executive of Alliance &
Leicester for five years until 2007, stepping down just before
the financial crisis hit and a year before it was bought by
Spain's Santander at a knock-down price.
He will keep his position as chairman of UKAR, a spokeswoman
for the government agency said.
Ireland's government, which has cut its exposure to AIB's
main rival, part-state owned Bank of Ireland, is keen
to offload the remaining banking assets it acquired during the
crisis and AIB has said it could attract private investment next
"I look forward to working with Mr Pym to ensure AIB
continues to make progress so that it can support the recovery
taking place in the Irish economy and begin to return capital to
the state," Ireland's finance minister Michael Noonan said in a
(Reporting by Padraic Halpin; editing by Jason Neely)