Insurance transitions for August 2020

Check out the latest movements and transitions within the industry this month.

QBE head honcho leaves industry

QBE Insurance Group (QBE) has announced the impending departure of Vivek Bhatia, CEO of the company’s Australia Pacific division.

QBE Group’s CEO, Pat Regan, will also take on greater oversight of operations in QBE’s home market during this time of transition. This will continue while an internal and external process to select Vivek’s successor is underway.

Pat Regan commented on Vivek’s departure, which will take place shortly, “During his time with QBE, Vivek has continued to strengthen our operations in Australia Pacific, and driven strong financial performance. I would like to thank Vivek for his contribution, and wish him well with this new opportunity.”

Key changes to ICA Board

The Insurance Council of Australia Limited (ICA) Board has appointed Sue Houghton, General Manager Insurance, Westpac, as President of the Insurance Council and Chair of the Board. Houghton replaces Gary Dransfield, who stepped aside on July 1 and her appointment expires on December 31, 2021.

ICA CEO Rob Whelan thanked Dransfield, previously CEO Insurance, Suncorp, for his service to the insurance industry and ICA Board.

“Gary has been a highly regarded Board Director since 2017 and his contribution to the insurance industry is much appreciated,” Whelan said.

“The ICA is delighted Sue has agreed to take on the role of President. Sue is a highly accomplished industry leader with extensive experience in the financial services sector.

Houghton said: “It is a privilege to be taking up this role at such a critical time, as Australian insurers respond to significant change as a result of extreme weather events and COVID-19.

The ICA Board appointed Lisa Harrison, Chief Executive Officer Insurance Product and Portfolio, Suncorp, to the Board. They also accepted the resignations of Mark Senkevics, Managing Director and Head of Australia & New Zealand, Swiss Re, and David Russell, Chief Executive, RAA Insurance.

Whelan said: “On behalf of the Board I thank Mark and David for their contributions to the Insurance Council, the Board and the industry.

AFCA appoints Head of Membership Services
The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) has announced the appointment of Campbell Daff to the newly created position of Head of Membership Services.

Daff will lead AFCA’s membership team to manage and deliver the ombudsman’s new vision for membership services within the Operational Excellence portfolio.

AFCA Chief Executive Officer and Chief Ombudsman David Locke welcomed the appointment, “Campbell has a strong background in managing and tailoring the membership experience. He brings a wealth of industry experience in relationship management, governance and operational transformation.”

“Campbell is an experienced leader whose expertise will assist AFCA in ensuring that our member engagement is meeting the needs of our more than 30,000 members from across Australia’s financial industry.

“We know that now, more than ever, our members want additional support and guidance on how they can effectively resolve complaints and minimise the issues that give rise to complaints in the first place. AFCA is passionate about using our data and intelligence to assist our members and consumers.” Locke concluded.

John Nagle resigns as CEO of icare

NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet has announced the resignation of John Nagle from his position as icare CEO and Managing Director.

Perrottet said, “I would like to thank Mr Nagle for his service with icare and pay tribute to his significant contribution to the insurance industry which spans more than 40 years.”

“On behalf of the NSW Government I wish him all the best for his future endeavours. The board will announce a replacement in due course.”