Virgin Money hires new cosec as director of legal resigns

Virgin Money has appointed a new deputy company secretary following the decision by incumbent director of legal and company secretary Jasan Fitzpatrick to take a career break.

Katie Marshall, who previously worked at Northern Rock with Fitzpatrick and formed part of the team that oversaw the high street bank’s takeover by Virgin Money on 1 January 2012, was appointed deputy company secretary at the end of April.

Fitzpatrick was previously general counsel at Northern Rock and joined Virgin Money as director of legal in January (30 January 2012). He joined ex-RBS litigation chief Stephen Pearson, who became Virgin Money’s first general counsel in 2010 (28 June 2010).

The post buy-out team consists of 15 lawyers plus around six support staff including paralegals. Both Pearson and Marshall will continue to report to Virgin Money chief executive Jayne-Anne Gadhia.

Commenting on Fitzpatrick’s departure, Pearson told The Lawyer: “Jasan built up a really good team at Northern Rock and now the two have come together and we are very proud not just of having achieved completion of such an important deal, but also of successfully integrating the two legal teams and saving jobs in the process.

“He’s a remarkable guy and worked for Northern Rock for 10 years and oversaw everything and we were absolutely thrilled when he decided to stay with us. We always knew that he might decide to move on. It was a matter of real pride to return his company back to private ownership and he is leaving now to take a well-earned career break. We are delighted to welcome Katie on board as our new deputy company secretary to fill Jasan’s shoes.” 

Allen & Overy and Freshfields were the two law firms that landed key roles on the deal that closed in November last year and saw Virgin Money pay £747m for Northern Rock – the ’good half’ of the bank that includes its 75 branches – creating an entity with four million customers (17 November 2011).