Bank of Ireland appoints Francesca McDonagh as new CEO

The first female chief executive at the head of a major Irish bank...

Bank of Ireland appoints Francesca McDonagh as new CEO

Picture by: Chris Radburn/PA Archive/PA Images

Bank of Ireland has announced the appointment of Francesca McDonagh as the group's new chief executive officer.

McDonagh (pictured) will succeed Richie Boucher and will also take up the position of executive director on the board on October 2nd.

The 42-year-old joins the bank from HSBC, where she has worked as head of retail banking and wealth management for the UK and Europe since 2014.

In this role, she has been responsible for all aspects of retail customer service, channels, products and segments of HSBC's three brands of HSBC Plc, M&S Bank and First Direct. 

Over the course of 20-year career at HSBC, she has held a number of senior leadership roles across seven different countries.

She has significant experience of technological transformation, of both digital and core banking systems. In the UK, she re-platformed HSBC’s digital offering and introduced a constant flow of innovative improvements to the bank’s systems.

Since 2015, McDonagh has also been deputy chair of the British Bankers’ Association. In terms of the Irish connection, her paternal grandparents hailed from Dublin and Galway.

Commenting on the appointment, Bank of Ireland governor Archie Kane said:

“The board conducted a thorough search and from a strong field selected this exceptional candidate.

"I am very pleased that we have been successful in attracting a person of the calibre and experience of Francesca to the group.

"She has been with HSBC for 20 years, during which time she has held a number of senior leadership roles in the bank across seven different countries.

"We very much look forward to working with her over the coming years as she leads the bank and its experienced management team into the next phase of its development.”

He added of Boucher's tenure: 

“Richie has been an outstanding success at Bank of Ireland, and leaves the bank in a much stronger position than he inherited when he took up the role of CEO in February 2009.

"On behalf of the board, I would like to express our sincere appreciation."