Santander hires former Marcus head Swati Bhatia to lead US digital charge

Santander hires former Marcus head Swati Bhatia to lead US digital charge

Santander's US arm has hired Swati Bhatia, the former head of Goldman Sachs' Marcus business, to lead its retail operations and lead a digital transformation programme.

Bhatia joins Santander Bank as head of retail banking and transformation. She will lead the US Consumer and Business Banking business and all related digital transformation initiatives.

Bhatia spent two years at Goldman Sachs as head of consumer digital bank Marcus and co-CEO of BNPL unit GreenSky. She left in January as Goldman retreated from the consumer space, selling off GreenSky and folding Marcus into a new asset and wealth management division.

Prior to Goldman, Bhatia was chief payments risk officer at Stripe and also had stints at PayPal and Capital One.

She joins Santander as the Spanish giant prepares to launch a fully digital platform in the US for its consumer and commercial businesses.

Earlier this month, the bank laid off around 330 staff as part of an evolution in the states, with a focus on digital capabilities. This week, it signalled its new digital focus, picking five branches to test a new "vision" for in-person banking focused on helping customers use online and mobile channels.

"The Bank has reached an inflection point as we progress towards becoming a national, digital bank with branches, and I am delighted to have Swati leading the business during this next chapter, says Tim Wennes, CEO, Santander Bank.

Adds Bhatia: "Santander’s globally connected technology platforms and depth of digital expertise provides a competitive advantage and positions the business for profitable growth in the U.S. market."

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