David MacLean, Metro Bank’s finance director, has resigned to join the fast-growing digital bank Revolut, Sky News learns.
A senior executive at Metro Bank is being lined up as the new finance chief of Revolut, the British digital bank which is poised to raise hundreds of millions of pounds to fuel its expansion.
Sky News has learnt that David MacLean, who has been finance director of Metro Bank since 2016, is to join Revolut in the coming months.
His appointment comes after a torrid period for his current employer, which has seen billions of pounds of deposit outflows amid concerns about its financial health.
At Revolut, Mr MacLean, who reports to Metro Bank’s chief financial officer, will take on responsibility for the finances of a fintech company which has itself been forced to respond to stiff challenges to its reputation.
Mr MacLean’s recruitment will form part of a concerted effort by Revolut’s founder, Nikolay Storonsky, to bolster its senior ranks.
Michael Sherwood, the former boss of Goldman Sachs in Europe and one of the City’s most prominent bank executives, is to join Revolut as a non-executive director, while Martin Gilbert, the fund management executive, is being lined up as its new chairman.
The hiring of a new finance chief comes after Peter O’Higgins resigned earlier this year.
Steve Tryner has been holding the role on an interim basis for the last few months.
In a statement issued to Sky News on Monday, a Metro Bank spokesperson said: “We can confirm that David MacLean is leaving Metro Bank to take up a new role.
“We wish him every success.”
Mr Storonsky later said of the appointment: “Dave brings a wealth of banking and financial services experience to the table and, as we prepare to launch Revolut in new international markets, will play a crucial role in our mission to help improve the financial wellbeing of millions of people worldwide.
“We’re excited for Dave to join us later this year”.
From a standing start less than five years ago, Revolut now has close to six million customers across Europe, roughly half of whom are in the UK.
Revolut says it is opening 12,000 accounts every day – equating to four million each year – and has received financial backing from some of the biggest names in the venture capital industry, including Balderton Capital, DST Global and Index Ventures.
A further funding round, which is expected to seek in the region of $500m, is likely to take place later this year amid a race by banking start-ups to raise capital for expansion and regulatory purposes.
Monzo, which is chaired by the former Northern Rock chief Gary Hoffman, announced a £113m fundraising last month which valued it at more than £2bn.
Zopa, another digital player, is also in talks with investors, while Atom Bank has just raised another £50m.
Mr Storonsky recently told Financial News that he would like Revolut to be worth between $20bn and $40bn before it contemplates a stock market listing, which is likely to be several years away.
The new board members’ arrival at Revolut will bolster a line-up lacking big City names, and which has faced searching questions about the quality of its compliance functions.
The firm became mired in a row about claims made in a newspaper article that it had “switched off” an automated system designed to prevent its money transfer system being used to violate international sanctions.
Revolut insisted that the new system was simply being tested alongside existing controls.
The company has also faced questions about alleged links to the Kremlin, which it has vehemently denied.
The Bank of England’s Prudential Regulation Authority recently challenged faster-growing firms under its auspices to adopt more rigorous stress-testing and evidence of greater challenge by board members.
As well as the UK, Revolut operates in Australia and across Europe, with launches in Canada, the US, Japan and Singapore expected shortly.
Sources said its next round of funding was likely to value it at more than $5bn, potentially making it Britain’s most valuable recent tech start-up.