New Westpac boss gets straight to it

On his first day in the role, Westpac Group CEO Brian Hartzer has confirmed his executive team and made some key changes to their functions.

Mr Hartzer announced the appointment of David McLean as chief executive of Westpac New Zealand.

Mr McLean joined Westpac in 1999 to head the debt capital markets group in New Zealand, and was appointed head of Westpac Institutional Bank New Zealand in 2004.

In 2009, Mr McLean was appointed as general manager for private, wealth and insurance, and from 2012 to 2014, he was managing director of the Westpac New York branch.

Mr Hartzer said Mr McLean had done an outstanding job acting in the role since August 2014 following the resignation of Peter Clare.

“I am pleased we are able to appoint someone that I know is already deeply respected and known by the New Zealand business community,” he said.

“It is important to me that someone with such in-depth knowledge of the business and local market will be taking on this critical role for the group.”

Mr Hartzer also announced the group’s Australian Financial Services (AFS) division will no longer exist, with the chief executives of Westpac Retail & Business Banking, St George Banking Group and BT Financial Group now required to report directly to Mr Hartzer.

The changes would build on the strong performance and collaboration across the executive team, he said.

“I am proud of what AFS has achieved over the past three years, and I am confident that the refreshed structure will continue to build on our successful portfolio of brands,” he said.

“However, to ensure we maintain momentum and coordination across our brands, we will keep together the retail product, marketing and analytics functions.”

All of the group’s changes are effective immediately.

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