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LONDON: NatWest has chosen former Mastercard chairman Rick Haythornthwaite as its next chair, the bank said on Wednesday, as the British bank seeks to contain the fallout from a row with former Brexit party leader Nigel Farage. Haythornthwaite, who is the current chair of groceries delivery firm Ocado, will join NatWest’s board on January 8, 2024, and take over as chair from veteran Howard Davies on April 16, the bank said in a statement.

Britain’s biggest business lender has been left reeling by revelations in recent months over a decision by its private bank Coutts to remove Farage as a customer, after a document emerged showing this was done partly over his views.

The repercussions of that decision ultimately led to NatWest CEO Alison Rose being forced to step down, as well as the boss of Coutts. Chairman Davies’ position also came under investor pressure over his handling of the matter.

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