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Co-Op chief executive Euan Sutherland offers to resign-BBC

Source: Reuters - Tue, 11 Mar 2014 08:35 GMT
Author: Reuters
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LONDON, March 11 (Reuters) - Britain's Co-operative Group's chief executive Euan Sutherland has offered to resign in a letter in which he describes the member-owned group as "ungovernable", the BBC reported on Tuesday.

The BBC said Sutherland, who joined in May last year, had written a resignation letter and that the board was trying to persuade him to stay.

The Co-op, a well-known high street presence with banks, supermarkets and funeral homes, has been rocked in the past year by the discovery of a 1.5 billion pound ($2.5 billion) capital hole in its banking arm and a drugs scandal involving the unit's ex-chairman, Methodist minister Paul Flowers.

Sutherland's offer to resign comes after the Observer newspaper reported on Sunday that he will be awarded up to 3.66 million pounds in pay and benefits this year while other senior executives would also see salary hikes.

In response, Sutherland wrote a post on the Co-op's Facebook page on March 9 saying that the leak had come from the group's boardroom, and that there appeared to be "disaffected people who are determined to make life difficult and embarrassing for The Co-operative." He said the remuneration report was still not finalised.

On Tuesday, the Guardian newspaper reported that the board committee that sets pay for the group is expected to meet this week to discuss retention payments for the senior executives.

The Co-op was not immediately available to comment on the reports.

Last month, the Co-op announced that it would be selling its farming business and was looking at offloading its pharmacies after the banking crisis sent its losses spiralling to the worst level in its 170-year history.

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