John Howells

  • CEO of LINK, the UK’s cash machine network.  LINK is the payment system that connects almost all of the UK’s 61,000 ATMs, providing UK consumers with safe access to £120 billion of cash per annum.
  • Leading a major transformation of LINK to ensure the long-term provision of cash for consumers across the UK in the face of a sustained reduction in its use.
  • Cash is a vital payment method for the UK and especially for the 18 million people who rely on it, many of whom are vulnerable consumers and living in deprived, remote or rural communities.  Cash is also the main fallback for all consumers if digital systems are not available. The long-term reduction in cash usage has been accelerated by the COVID-19 crisis with drops in ATM transactions of over 60% during the lockdown.
  • LINK is regulated by the Payment Systems Regulator, and by the Bank of England as a systemically important payment system.  LINK also operates a range of financial inclusion programmes for UK consumers.
  • Member of the Payment Systems Regulator’s Statutory Panel, and of the LINK Consumer Council.
  • Previous roles include for Capgemini Consulting, as lead for the Department for Work and Pensions and Central Government.
  • Early career with Gemini Consulting’s financial services strategy practice, and Lloyds Bank.