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Major bank executive retires

The chief executive of a major bank’s institutional arm has announced their retirement after more than 30 years in the sector.

Westpac has announced that Lyn Cobley, chief executive of Westpac Institutional Bank, is retiring from her position after five years and more than 30 years in the banking and finance sector.

As CEO of Westpac Institutional Bank, Ms Cobley has been responsible for Westpac’s global relationships with corporate, institutional and government clients as well as all core product offerings across financial and capital markets, transactional banking, working capital payments, debt and structured finance.  

Ms Cobley will remain in the role until 1 July, and an “international search” for her replacement is underway.

Westpac CEO Peter King thanked Ms Cobley for her contribution in leading the Institutional Bank over the last five years.


“Lyn navigated institutional banking during a period of intense global competitive pressures and structural changes across these markets following the global financial crisis,” Mr King said.

“Under Lyn’s leadership, the Westpac Institutional Bank team has worked tirelessly to meet the needs of the bank’s government, corporate and institutional customers, most particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Prior to joining Westpac, Ms Cobley spent eight years at CBA, including as executive general manager, retail products and third party banking.

Over her 30-year career in finance, Ms Cobley held senior roles in securitisation at CBA and Citi Bank and was also head of financial institutions in Australia for Barclays.

Ms Cobley said that she has “thoroughly enjoyed” her decades in the banking sector, and stated she felt it was the right time to retire from executive life, revealing she will now be seeking board positions in the future.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed a long and varied banking career. However, having held executive positions through a number of significant events, including the GFC and this year the COVID-19 pandemic, it is now time to step back and develop a portfolio career, including board positions,” Ms Cobley said.

Curt Zuber to take over in the interim

Westpac has stated that Curt Zuber, current group treasurer, will act as the chief executive for Westpac Institutional Bank from 1 July while an international search for Ms Cobley’s permanent replacement is undertaken.

Mr Zuber has worked in financial markets for over 30 years and been with Westpac for 25 years. He was appointed Westpac’s treasurer in 2004. 

Meanwhile, Joanne Dawson, chief financial officer, Westpac Institutional Bank and Treasury, will act as group treasurer during this period. 

Ms Dawson joined Westpac Treasury in 2003 and was appointed deputy treasurer in 2008 where her responsibilities included global funding, group liquidity and balance sheet management. In 2019, she completed a Sloan MSc in Leadership and Strategy at the London Business School.

[Related: Westpac expands interest-only offering]

Major bank executive retires

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