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Hampshire Trust Bank plc today announces the appointment of Robert Sharpe as its new Chairman, subject to receiving regulatory approval. He will succeed Robert East, who has been Interim Chairman since December 2016. Robert East will remain on the Board in his previous role of Non-Executive Director and Chair of the Board Risk Committee.

Robert Sharpe has had a long career in financial services. He is currently Chairman of Bank of Ireland (UK) plc, Al Rayan Bank plc and Honeycomb Investment Trust plc. Previous roles include Chief Executive of West Bromwich Building Society and Portman Building Society.

Robert East, Interim Chairman at Hampshire Trust Bank, said: “I look forward to welcoming Robert Sharpe to our Board as our new Chairman. Since Hampshire Trust Bank was acquired in May 2014, we have built a robust business dedicated to specialising in meeting the financing needs of SME business customers for Asset Finance, Commercial Mortgages and Residential Property Finance and deposit taking from individuals and businesses. We have exciting plans to support more customers in our chosen segments and the Board is committed to realising these.”

Robert Sharpe said: “This is an important time in Hampshire Trust Bank’s development. I will be working with the business to fulfill its objective of delivering sustainable growth and returns by operating in markets where its specialist capabilities are most valued by its target customers. The building blocks are in place for the next phase for the business. My objective will be to work with the principal stakeholders to continue to build a business of real value over the next few years.”

Financial highlights, for the year ended 31 December 2016:

  • Pre-tax profit increased to £4.4m (2015: loss £3.1m)
  • Lending assets increased by 161% to £463.5m (2015: £177.6m)
  • Customer deposits increased by 180% to £523.3m (2015: £187.2m)
  • Customer numbers more than doubled to over 16,000 (2015: 7,500)