Atom loses long-serving lending director

By Roger Baird on Thursday 18 July 2019

Digital Banking

Maria Harris, director of intermediary lending, leaves the bank this week to become an independent consultant.

Atom loses long-serving lending director
Image source: Company supplied

Atom Bank said one of its longest-serving senior executives is leaving the app-only lender founded five years ago.

Maria Harris, director of intermediary lending, leaves the Durham-based bank this week to take become an advisor and independent mortgage market consultant.

The fintech said David Castling will take over the leadership of Atom’s intermediary lending team and will report to chief operations officer Stewart Bromley. 

Atom, one of the first digital banks in the UK, sells business loans, mortgages and offers savings accounts. It was founded in 2014, secured a banking licence in June 2015 and launched the following year in April.


Banker of the Year

Since its launch, the bank has loaned over £2.4bn and taken in £1.8bn in deposits.

Harris was named Banker of the Year at the inaugural Women in Finance Awards for her work at Atom in 2018. She joined the bank in 2014.

Atom chief executive Mark Mullen said: “After five years of contributing to our success we wish Maria all the very best with her new ventures. I am delighted that we are bringing both continuity and experience to our intermediary relationships with the appointment of David Castling.”

Harris added: “To design, build and launch the UK’s first fully digital mortgage has been an exhilarating and rewarding experience. As a local lass, the bank and the jobs that we’ve created in the North-East is something that I’m immensely proud to have been a part of and I know will create a lasting legacy for the region.”


Brexit uncertainty

The lender has raised £400m from private and institutional backers since it was founded, its largest investor is Spanish banking giant BBVA, which has a 40 per cent stake in the business.

In May, Atom was understood to be preparing a £50m fundraising after BBVA decided against mounting a takeover bid for the bank amid Brexit uncertainty earlier in the year.

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