Board changes at Provident Financial

CHRIS Gillespie has stepped down from the board at Provident Financial.

The Bradford-based home credit business announced that Gillespie has left his role as managing director of the consumer credit division (CCD) to pursue career opportunities outside the group.

“The board wishes to thank him for his dedication and hard work over the last six years and wishes him well for the future,” the company said.

Following this change, the executive directors of Provident Financial will include only the chief executive Peter Crook and finance director Andrew Fisher.

Gillespie is replaced by Mark Stevens, who joined Provident Financial in September 2012 as commercial director, CCD, having held board level roles in retail financial services, consultancy and private equity.

The company said: “Mark has the skills and experience to lead CCD through the next phase of its development. The medium term repositioning of the business will involve broadening the customer and product proposition, including on-line lending, and driving greater operational effectiveness and cost efficiency through the roll‑out of mobile technology.”

Crook said: “I would like to thank Chris for all his dedication and hard work in leading CCD through the last six years which have seen some challenging market conditions and I wish him well for the future. Mark has already made a strong start in leading CCD’s commercial initiatives, in particular the development of its online proposition. I’m looking forward to working closely with Mark to deliver the medium term agenda and drive improved performance.”

In July, the company said its CCD was experiencing “challenging” markets with rising living costs putting pressure on household incomes and putting people off borrowing.

Crook said that Provident had already acted to cut costs in the CCD which would benefit the second half of its trading year.