The lender said the promotion came as it was preparing for a significant expansion in to prime property lending to high net worth individuals. It is targeting the prime residential London and Home Counties areas.
Bhakta joined Butterfield in 2011 from BNP Paribas Fortis after a financial services career at Credit Agricole Indosuez and NatWest.
Commenting on her promotion, Bhakta said: “I am looking forward to the challenges and opportunities of the CEO role. We have an excellent team and I know I can rely on their enthusiasm and support in building an exceptional mortgage business.”
Butterfield Group chairman and chief executive officer Michael Collins added: “Alpa’s appointment recognises her hard work during the past year in launching and growing BML. As CEO, she leads a world-class team that provides a unique service for our high net worth clients seeking premium UK property.”