AMP announced Catherine Brenner has resigned as Chairman and will step down from the Board. Mike Wilkins has been appointed as Executive Chairman, effective immediately.
Mr Wilkins will lead the company as Executive Chairman for an interim period while the process for selecting a Chairman, and appointment of an additional new non-executive director, is conducted. This will further strengthen governance and ensure stability while a measured process of board renewal is undertaken. Mr Wilkins will now lead the selection process for a new Chief Executive Officer, which is in progress.
AMP also announces that Group General Counsel and Company Secretary Brian Salter will leave the company. His outstanding deferred remuneration will be forfeited as a result of the Board exercising its discretion.
The Board has received advice from Philip Crutchfield QC, Tamieka Spencer Bruce of Counsel, and Tim Bednall of King & Wood Mallesons in relation to certain issues raised in the Royal Commission concerning the preparation of the Clayton Utz report on AMP’s fee for no service issue. The advice follows the establishment of the Board Committee chaired by Mr Wilkins to examine the issues relating to AMP’s advice business that have been raised in the Royal Commission.
Having considered and assessed the matters, the Board is satisfied that the former Chairman Catherine Brenner, former Chief Executive Officer Craig Meller and the other directors did not act inappropriately in relation to the preparation of the Clayton Utz report.
The Board, including the former Chairman, were unaware of and disappointed about the number of drafts and the extent of the Group General Counsel’s interaction with Clayton Utz during the preparation of the report. The Board commissioned and received the report. It was not a matter for the Board’s approval.