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Nationwide Building Society CIO to join Co-operative Bank

Gary Delooze to join Co-operative Bank as CIO after six years heading up Nationwide Building Society’s IT department

Nationwide Building Society CIO Gary Delooze is leaving after six years to take up a similar role at Co-operative bank.

Delooze has taken a central role in Nationwide’s ongoing digital transformation in recent years, which has seen it become a digital leader in the finance sector.

He will now take the reins at Co-operative as the bank attempts to adapt its IT to meet its business targets. “We are looking forward to welcoming Gary into the bank and believe he is a great fit for not only the values and ethics at the heart of our business, but also to take on the role of CIO,” said Nick Slape, CEO of Co-operative Bank. “This is a critical focus area for our business as we move forward with our aims to evolve our IT infrastructure to better facilitate our growth plans.”

Delooze, who will start work at the Co-operative Bank in April, spoke to Computer Weekly about his role at Nationwide in 2021. He is a former Ernst & Young and PricewaterhouseCoopers consultant, and has worked at Barclays and Lloyds Banking Group in the past.

The Co-operative Bank said in a statement that Delooze “has developed expertise in a wide range of technologies through hands-on delivery of transformational IT strategies and operating models, enterprise architectures, technology roadmaps and change portfolios”.

Following the job offer, Delooze said: “As a market leader in ethical banking and sustainability, the Co-operative Bank is already showing that it is focused on the topics which continue to be important to its customers, and I believe there is a really bright future ahead, something I’m looking forward to being part of as the Bank embarks on its pivotal next phase.”

One of his major achievements at Nationwide was to reduce its reliance on outsourced IT services. When he joined in 2017, about 90% of the organisation’s IT capability was outsourced to systems integrators and technology providers. He used his digital transformation programme to break the society’s reliance on outsourcing and built an in-house engineering function. IT capability is now almost 50% in-house.

He takes to the Co-operative bank the experience of working in an environment where the importance of tech to financial services was recognised. Nationwide is an example of a financial services business that has transformed through tech.

The building society has been on a long tech investment journey for over a decade. When most financial services firms were slashing spending due to the global financial crash of 2008, Nationwide was investing heavily in IT. At that time, it embarked on a £1bn project to transform its technology, which followed years of under-investment. This created the foundations for the company to adopt the latest technology when it emerges. Today, it is using fintech to transform the business.

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