AMP announces new CEO with results

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AMP reported positive wealth management results for its 1H 13.

The bank reported a net profit of $393 million for the first half, with AMP’s wealth management and investment businesses performing strongly, despite a challenging life insurance market. This was reflected in the business’ cashflow, with net cashflows increasing nearly sixfold in Australian Wealth Management.

AMP reached its best net cashflow in six years, and cashflows into the North platform increased from $636m to $1,864 following the bank's merger with AXA. Hilllross Financial Planning had a net cashflow of $556m, up from $84m at the same time last year.

Planner numbers continue to grow, with the aligned network reaching 3,680 financial advisers, up from 3,636 at FY12. CEO Craig Dunn said that the bank hasn’t finished growing either, and plans to build on the success of the AXA merger.

“We will increase the scale and pace of change in our core business, using our expertise and Australia’s largest adviser footprint, to respond to consumers’ demands for greater control, transparency, simplicity, convenience and value,” Dunn said.

Like most other businesses, AMP is still struggling to sustain its wealth protection sector, with operating earnings down 52% on 1H 12.

“Improving the performance of the insurance business is an area of critical focus as we introduce a series of actions to improve both customer retention and the management of claims, and which will deliver benefits to both customers and shareholders,” he said.

Dunn also announced that he would be stepping down as CEO, replaced by Craig Meller effective 1 January 2014. He said that it was a difficult decision, but he had always thought five years would be a good length of time to spend in the position – though that has increased to six.

Meller, who joined AMP in 2001, said he was looking forward to the challenges and opportunities of his new role.

“I’m very excited about the opportunity to lead AMP, particularly in an environment where our customers’ needs are rapidly changing.  As we have announced today, we’re focusing on driving higher revenues through deeper customer relationships and improved business efficiencies.”