The Permanent TSB (PTSB) has appointed internal candidate Nicola O’Brien as Chief Financial Officer, ending a long search for a permanent incumbent of a position that had been filled on an interim basis by three people over the past two years.
Ms O’Brien, currently head of finance and investor relations at PTSB, joined the bank in early 2017 after a four-year stint as a management consultant and, before that, almost 18 years at Bank of Ireland.
“Nicola’s business acumen and in-depth knowledge of Permanent TSB will be of great value to the bank, particularly as we finalize the acquisition of certain elements of Ulster Bank’s business in the coming months. “said Eamonn Crowley, group chief executive. .
The appointment, which took effect immediately on Thursday, also allowed Ms O’Brien to become a member of the bank’s executive committee and board of directors.
Following Mr Crowley’s promotion in June 2020 from PTSB Chief Financial Officer to Chief Executive, the Dubliner continued to hold the interim finance role for a time. In September, the PTSB hired then-Grant Thornton partner Paul McCann as interim chief financial officer. He held this position for a year, before becoming managing director of Irish IT services company Ergo Group.
PTSB’s Declan Norgrove subsequently agreed to take on the role on an interim basis, prior to Ms O’Brien’s appointment.
Ms O’Brien takes on the role of PTSB, which has shrunk significantly since receiving a €4billion taxpayer bailout at the height of the financial crisis, is set to increase its loan portfolio by nearly 50% as it takes over €6.8 billion in mortgages and small business loans from Ulster Bank, as the latter is wound up.
PTSB now sees the deal and an expected round of rate hikes from the European Central Bank (ECB), following an initial hike last month, boosting operating profits to 300 million euros and generating a return on equity by 10% by the end of the middle. of the decade. The bank’s operating profit averaged less than 80 million euros in the two years before the Covid-19 crisis.
Two years ago, analysts predicted that PTSB would produce below-average annual returns on equity of 2-3% over the medium term, compared to an 8-10% ratio seen as a sign of a healthy bank.