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Major bank veteran to step down

Westpac announced the looming departure of one of its longest-serving executives.

Westpac Group has announced that acting chief financial officer Gary Thursby has decided to leave the bank in early 2021 after almost 13 years of service.

Mr Thursby joined Westpac in 2008 from the Commonwealth Bank, where he served as CFO for almost 11 years.

The outgoing executive said that after having served through a “significant year of change”, he decided it was “the right time to leave”.

Westpac Group CEO Peter King, who Mr Thursby replaced as CFO following the resignation of Brian Hazrter, thanked the veteran for his service.

“Gary has made a significant contribution across a broad range of roles, including as chief strategy and operating officer, as well as running Enterprise Services and, more recently, acting CFO,” he said.

“He has been instrumental in developing the organisation’s strategy, including Westpac’s fintech investments, as well as overseeing the implementation of open banking and driving efficiencies in the bank’s operations.”

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Former ANZ exec joins Westpac

Westpac has also announced the appointment of Scott Collary to the revamped role of chief operating officer.

Mr Collary will head up Westpac’s new Group Operating Office, which is an amalgamation of group operations and group technology.

Mr Collary replaces outgoing chief information officer Craig Bright, who will depart the role in late September.

Mr Thursby will serve as acting CIO until Mr Collary assumed his new role later this year, subject to regulatory approval.

Mr Collary joins Westpac from the Bank of Montreal, where he has held the role of chief information and operations officer for the group’s North American personal and business banking, private wealth and global asset management divisions.

Prior to joining the Bank of Montreal, Mr Collary served as ANZ’s group CIO from December 2014 to November 2016, and as Citibank’s CIO, consumer, North America, from March 2008 to November 2014.

“I’m delighted to welcome an executive of Scott’s calibre to the Westpac team,” Mr King said.

“Scott has extensive experience working in senior financial services roles leading large global teams. He has a proven track record of delivering large-scale transformation programs at major international banks that improve operating and technology performance.

“We look forward to Scott leading our technology and operations teams.”

This is the latest of a number of executive changes at Westpac and follows the appointment of Michael Rowland as chief financial officer earlier this month.

Westpac is yet to announce permanent replacements for chief executive, consumer, David Lindberg.

[Related: Westpac appoints new CFO]

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