LONDON Aug 30 Members of the Co-operative Group
endorsed a radical shake-up of its board structure on
Saturday, designed to avoid a repeat of the mistakes that
brought Britain's biggest mutual to its knees, the group said.
A string of poor decisions at the supermarkets-to-funerals
group, such as the ill-fated 2009 takeover of Britannia building
society, culminated in it losing control of its bank and a 2.5
billion pound ($4.15 billion) loss last year.
Earlier this year, Paul Myners, a former government
minister, set out a raft of reforms he said were necessary to
ensure the group's survival. The biggest change was ditching the
Co-op's large board drawn from regional co-operatives in favour
of one containing professional executives.
Co-op Group Chairwoman Ursula Lidbetter said earlier this
month that the pillars of Myner's proposals were retained in the
changes put to the vote, but the new board would still include
three directors nominated by members.
"The Co-operative Group members have today voted in favour
of a resolution on the adoption of a new Rulebook to radically
reform the group's governance structure," a spokesman said.
The changes put to the members also included the
establishment of a council of 100 members to uphold the group's
co-operative principle, and introducing a "one member one vote"
($1 = 0.6023 British Pounds)
(Reporting by Paul Sandle and Michael Holden. Editing by Jane