One of the most senior figures in corporate banking in the West Midlands has moved to a new role.
Sarah Cooper-Jones was NatWest’s regional director for corporate and commercial banking but has now taken on a new post as head of capability and coaching for the group’s commercial banking operations.
In her new role, she will focus on ensuring staff have the skills and capabilities to help the bank’s customers and the communities that it supports.
Throughout her time with the bank, which spans more than three decades, Ms Cooper-Jones has undertaken a breadth of senior leadership roles with global and UK remits.
In 2003, she changed career direction from banking to HR but returned to the West Midlands in 2016 and was named Advocate of the Year at Women in Finance Awards in 2019.
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She said: “Our bank has an important part to play in supporting the economy to recover, both locally and nationally.
“We also have a clear obligation to play an active role in supporting Britain’s transition to a low-carbon economy, to reduce the effects of climate change and to protect the planet for future generations.
“A critical component is educating our customers and employees while also positioning ourselves as thought leaders in this space and I am looking forward to helping embed this in our activity going forward.”
Ms Copper will be replaced as West Midlands regional director by Laura Suffolk who has more than 15 years of banking experience, working across private, commercial and corporate relationship management in the Midlands and North West.
She joined NatWest Group seven years ago, having previously worked for HSBC, and was most recently a member of the RBS invoice finance team across the Midlands.
Ms Suffolk previously sat on the Women in Banking and Finance Birmingham boards, leading a mentoring programme across the region.
In her new role, she will lead teams of corporate and commercial relationship managers and directors as they support customers with revenues from £2 million up to large corporations in excess of £1 billion with their banking and funding needs.
She said: “It’s a privilege to lead the corporate and commercial team across the West Midlands, particularly during this time, and we will continue to support our clients and customers across the region as the wider economy rebuilds.
“As part of NatWest’s purpose-led strategy, supporting enterprise and enabling our communities to succeed is central to everything we do and I look forward to working with my team across the region in the weeks and months ahead.”