Delivering one of Europe’s largest divestments for the Co-op

The Co-operative Banking Group planned to divest its Life and Savings Business to Royal London, an initiative known as ‘Jupiter’.


The programme focused on separating the Life & savings business from the Co-operative banking Group including its IT systems data and handing over a fully operational IT estate to Royal London, enabling the sale to complete. This was one of the largest IT separation programmes in Europe at the time.


The IT separation involved unpicking 30 years of IT system development, creating a stand-alone ‘cloned’ system on a modern infrastructure and delivering this onto an IBM supported infrastructure for Royal London.



To add to the challenge, the Life and Savings IT systems were part of the wider Co-operative Banking systems which contained General Insurance and Retail Banking systems and data.


“It was so important to get the right people on the team to make sure we delivered”


Andy Maher, Head of IT


CBG’s internal pool of resources was small and as separation expertise was not readily available they approached Project One. As a long-standing partner in all kinds of change over the last 17 years they knew Project One’s company ethos and approach to working with clients was a perfect fit to deliver this successfully, along with the extensive experience and expertise Project One can bring.


CBG and Project One then set out very clear expectations. They allowed no egos and no hierarchy. They shared decision making, knowing that whoever made the decision, others would have their back.


“We’ve got back a team in the bank who are far more skilled, and who’ve learned an awful lot, technically and personally, about being great change leaders”


Andy Maher, Head of IT


The team completed the separation nearly three months ahead of plan, delivering:


  • Separation of 30 years of systems and data in 21 months and implemented in four days
  • 6.5 million customer files
  • A few thousand system interfaces
  • Project team of nearly 200 people on and off shore
  • £65 million budget
  • One of the top three largest separation programmes in Europe

“The Project One team played a central role in setting up the Programme for success and their drive and leadership was outstanding”

Kevin Donnelly

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