24 May 24

Bank back in mutual ownership

24 May 2024

The Co-operative Bank and Coventry Building Society have announced they had completed a deal for the bank to be acquired by the society.

Bob Dench, chair of the bank said:

“This transaction sees The Co-operative Bank returning to mutuality. I am very proud of all those who have worked so hard over so many years to rebuild the Bank. I am sure the Coventry Building Society will prove to be a very good home for us.”

22 December 23

The Co-op Bank has new entered 'exclusive' merger talks with Coventry Building Society. This is now officially confirmed.

Starting with the Financial Times, which included a quote from the Customer Union, a number of media outlets have now picked up on the story.

https://www.ft.com/content/cee13985-7dad-4710-b9a2-49f0e9258134 (Paywall)

We commented to the FT:

"The Customer Union for Ethical Banking, the independent union for Co-op’s customers, said a successful deal would “align perfectly with our dual goals: preserving the bank’s world-leading ethical standards and steering it back towards some form of mutual or co-operative ownership.”

22 July 23
Nigel Farage giving a speech when leader of the Brexit Party.Nigel Farage giving a speech when leader of the Brexit Party. (Photo 155844017 © Kubajunek | Dreamstime.com)
31 August 21

The Co-operative Bank has given customers more time to complete its ethics policy poll.

Customers now have until 10 September to complete the poll.
You can fill in the poll here – it takes around 15 minutes:

The poll is an important opportunity to influence the bank, so do please take the time to complete it if you can.
You can find our latest newsletter, which includes our thoughts on the poll, here.

15 May 21

28 April 2021

JC Flowers and Bain Capital Credit have agreed to buy BlueMountain Capital’s share in the Co-op Bank. The acquisition remains subject to regulatory approval.

Nick Slape, Chief Executive Officer of the Co-operative Bank, commented:

08 February 21

We asked members of the Customer Union (and Save Our Bank supporters) to send in questions that they'd like us to ask the Co-operative Bank at our regular meeting with them in September 2020.

We assembled - and in some cases amalgamated - a list of questions from members before presenting them to the bank for initial discussion. The bank then went away to consider a more detailed response, and there was a further dialogue. It's taken a while for us to collate the responses and write this up. We'll try and turn this round more quickly in future.

The issues covered are listed below. Click on a subject for details of our question and the bank’s responses.

18 January 21
The Hive

January 2021

The Co-operative Bank has announced that it has renewed its support for The Hive – a programme delivered by Co-operatives UK to support new co‑operative start-ups, help grow existing co‑ops and help business convert to co-operative or community ownership.

The Hive was launched in 2016, and has already received £1.3 million in funding from the bank. This has helped over 1,000 co-operatives and groups with support including direct business advice, workshops, training and mentoring.

21 December 20
Dog tail between legs

The Co-operative Bank informed us (on Monday 21 December 2020), that the discussions around a potential bid for the bank have ended.

This brings to an end the speculation around a bid, reported by Sky News to be from Cerberus Asset Management, later picked up by The Guardian.

17 December 20

21st November CUEB Gathering – 2:30pm


This is a short report from the 5th annual Gathering of the Save Our Bank campaign and Customer Union for Ethical Banking (CUEB). As in the last three years, we were joined by representatives of the Co-operative Bank. We also had 55 attendees at the start of the gathering; a record for any CUEB meeting so far.

Zoom callReport from Maria Cearns and Lesley McPherson of the Co-operative Bank

18 November 20

The Co-operative Bank has been approached by a prospective buyer.

Guardian and Sky news identify as Cerberus Capital Management


In line with our formal recoginition agreement, the Co-op Bank informed the Customer Union on 17 November that it had received "a non-binding offer for the bank" and that "discussions are at a very preliminary stage". The bank went on to say that "Our priority and focus remains to deliver our agreed plan and transformation over the coming years". The formal announcement by the bank, made to conform with regulatory requirements is here: