St. George head of intermediary distribution Steven Heavey has announced his resignation, only days after his involvement in the launch of Westpac's rebadged Bank of Melbourne brand in Victoria.
Heavey is set to leave St. George at the end of September this year, after six years with the lender. He will be replaced by parent bank Westpac's current general manager of third party distribution and RAMS chief executive, Melos Sulicich.
Sulicich's expanded thid party distribution brief will also include overarching responsibility for all of St. George's auto finance business, which be managed under his oversight by current head of the business, Peter Bell.
Speaking with Australian BrokerNews, Heavey said his decision to leave St. George was based on a desire for a new challenge following the rolling out of the new Bank of Melbourne brand this week, which is part of Westpac's multi-brand strategy.
Heavey said he was "not in a hurry to go anywhere", and would be working closely with Sulicich in coming months to ensure a smooth transition for brokers.
"The advocates we've built up have become very close to the business, and I know a large number of those brokers intimately - over the years, business relationships have turned into friendships," Heavey said. "The advocacy they have for St. George will not be affected - nothing changes with me leaving."
Heavey said he had not decided on a new position, and planned to take time off with his family. However, Heavey suggested his career would continue to be focused on intermediary distribution, though he said this could be broader than mortgages, in industries such as insurance.
Heavey citted as a key achievement his development of St. George's broker segmentation strategy, which culminated in the launch of St. George's top tier 'Flame' segment, a strategy he said has since been adopted by other banking institutions due to its success.
More recently, Heavey said the reintroduction of year-one trail commission for St. George brokers was a key achievement, following the previous unpopular abolition of year-one trail.
"I've been very active in trying to position St. George in the minds of brokers as high as possible amidst significant changes," he said.