Starling Bank selects Ovo executive as new CEO

Starling Bank, a prominent UK challenger bank, has made a significant appointment in its quest for continued growth. Raman Bhatia, the current CEO of energy supplier Ovo, has been selected as the new CEO of Starling Bank. Bhatia is set to assume his new role in the summer, taking over from John Mountain, who has been serving as interim CEO since the departure of Anne Boden last year.

With a wealth of experience in the financial sector, Bhatia previously held the position of head of the digital bank for HSBC’s Retail Banking and Wealth Management business in the UK and Europe. He also served on HSBC’s Executive Committee, overseeing brands such as HSBC, First Direct, and M&S Bank. Starling Bank, established in 2014 and boasting over four million personal and business accounts, has hailed Bhatia’s appointment as a move towards ushering the bank into a new phase of growth.

In a statement, Starling Bank expressed confidence in Bhatia’s ability to lead the company, citing his extensive background in consumer tech and fintech. This experience, combined with his tenure at Ovo, where he navigated the energy supplier through a period of significant transformation, positions Bhatia as an ideal leader for Starling Bank.

Former CEO Anne Boden, who now serves as a non-executive director, has previously voiced her desire for Starling Bank to go public. However, David Sproul, chair of Starling Bank, emphasized that while becoming a publicly listed bank is a possibility for the future, it is not the current focus for the company.

Excited about his new role, Bhatia expressed his admiration for Starling Bank’s commitment to leveraging technology for the benefit of its customers and employees. He stated, “I can’t wait to get started and to see what we can achieve together,” highlighting his enthusiasm for the journey ahead.