Revolving Doors – February 2023

Can you believe we are already in February 2023? It has been a busy year so far.

I have been back in the office since 9 January and each week the city has been getting busier.  Perhaps we are seeing a shift in the work from home mentality.  It certainly seems like people are beginning to increase their days working in the office – even on a Monday the roads, buses, trains and ferries looked busier.  I don’t think we will ever go back to 5 mandatory days in the office, but I think increased days back into the office are good for everyone.

Executives and Managers who are returning from leave are working out their hiring plans for the year ahead.  We are also finding candidates are more inquisitive about what new opportunities the new year will bring.  This is leading to a fast start in the roles we are working on already.

I am also seeing an increase in candidates relocating from overseas – especially South African and Irish Chartered Accountants.  The South African’s are emigrating and the Irish coming on the working holiday visa.  This is really helping the candidate pool for interim / contracting roles.

In terms of CFO activity, an analysis I did on CFO movements data showed an 11% increase in CFO movements in 2022 compared to 2021.  This trend has continued into January 2023 and has ensured the year has started on a very positive note.

CFOs Becoming CEO

AGL have confirmed Damien Nicks as their new CEO.  Damien had been CFO since August 2018 before moving into the interim CEO role on 1 October 2022.

ASX CFO Moves In

AGL have also appointed Gary Brown as their permanent CFO.  Gary joined AGL in January 2022, he became interim CFO on 1 October 2022 when Damien Nicks moved into the interim CEO role.

Following Lawrie Conway’s move late last year from CFO into the CEO role at Evolution Mining, Barrie Van Der Merwe has been appointed CFO.  Barrie is moving across from Orica.

ASX CFO Moves – Out

Brent Henley, CFO of Bravura Solutions, has moved into a newly created global role of Chief Commercial Officer.  Harmen Fredrikze, who has been Group Controller since 2014 will move into the interim CFO role.

Specialist mining business American Rare Earth are looking for a new CFO following Noel Whitcher’s resignation.  Mark Terry has been appointed interim CFO. Noel has moved to a similar listed company – Australian Rare Earth.

Interesting Moves outside the ASX

Race Strauss (ex CFO Jetstar and A2 Milk), is flying again with the news of his recent appointment as CFO Virgin Australia. Current CFO David Marr is moving into a new role to focus on a potential ASX listing.

Award winning Australian architecture business, Architectus, have appointed Belinda Giles as their new CFO.  Belinda was most recently CFO of Australian managed services provider Brennan IT.

Brennan IT have replaced Belinda with ex TPG Telecom CFO Stephen Banfield.  Stephen spent 20 years with TPG Companies and left in November 2021.

Chris Malley moves from the ASX arena to Private Equity.  Chris was CFO at Nick Scali and has have moved to Love to Dream – an Aussie designed baby sleepwear business.

After 14 years, and various finance roles with Holcim, Gilbert Joseph has resigned and has landed a new role.  Gilbert will be the new CFO at Graymont – a global leader in lime and limestone solutions.

I do not usually see much movement in the Education sector. CFOs in this space tend to have longer tenure in their organisations. However after over 18 years at MLC School, CFO Ross Kirby has moved to Sydney Grammar as Director of Business and Operations.  A search is currently underway for his replacement.

Staying in Education, St Joseph’s College Hunters Hill (Joey’s) have readvertised their CFO role following the resignation of current CFO – Matt EasdownKath Dickson, ex CFO at Shore, has stepped in as the interim CFO.

Josh McHutchison has been confirmed as the new CFO at Sydney Airport.  Josh takes over from interim CFO Belinda Shaw who has moved to Boral.  Josh has had a long career with both Macquarie and Lendlease.

Who wouldn’t want to move from New York to Byron?  That is what Laura Mineo is doing.  Moving from NY based Rokt to Byron Bay based fintech Zepto as their new CFO.

Author – Colin Kerr

With over 25 years’ experience, Colin is a specialist interim and contracting recruiter within Accounting and Finance. If the role requires a qualified accountant – that is Colin’s area of expertise. He focuses on the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) role and the direct reports (Financial Controller, Finance Manager, Management Accountant, Financial Planning & Analysis), as well as any other finance roles that sit in a corporate head office – tax, internal audit and treasury.