National Australia Bank announces appointment of RBS’s Ross McEwan as CEO

Maria Nikolova

Mr McEwan announced his resignation from RBS in April 2019 and is set to start with NAB once his obligations to his current employer have been discharged.

National Australia Bank Ltd. (ASX:NAB) today announces the appointment of Ross McEwan as Group Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director.

Mr McEwan announced his resignation from RBS in April 2019 and will start with NAB once his obligations to his current employer have been discharged, no later than April 2020. He will be invited to join the NAB Board at this time. The appointment is subject to regulatory approvals.

“Ross McEwan is the ideal leader for NAB as we seek to transform our operations and culture firmly around leading customer service, experience and products,” NAB Chairman-elect Philip Chronican said.

Mr McEwan joined RBS Group as CEO UK Retail in 2012 from the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, where he had been Group Executive for Retail Banking Services for five years. He had previously been CBA’s Executive General Manager with responsibility for its branch network, contact centres and third-party mortgage brokers.

Mr McEwan said: “It is a privilege to return to Australia and lead NAB at a crucial time for the bank, its customers, employees, shareholders and the broader community.

“There are a number of areas where NAB can extend its lead, such as business banking, agriculture and health, and other areas where I believe we should consistently lead such as customer service. We must also meet and exceed the expectations of our many stakeholders.

The appointment means that Mr Chronican will transition from interim CEO to the Chairman position in mid-November 2019, replacing Dr Ken Henry. The Board will then put other interim management arrangements suitable to APRA in place if required. Mr Chronican has been interim CEO since March 2019, following the resignation of Andrew Thorburn after four and a half years as CEO.

Mr McEwan’s contract is a rolling contract with either Mr McEwan or NAB able to terminate it by giving the other party 26 weeks’ notice. A restraint period of six months will be applicable post termination.

There are three key components of Mr McEwan’s remuneration package – fixed remuneration, annual variable reward, and long-term variable reward.

The fixed remuneration includes $2.5 million per annum (inclusive of superannuation and any salary sacrifice arrangements), reviewed annually in accordance with NAB’s remuneration policy.

The Annual Variable Reward involves potential to earn between 0% and 150% of fixed remuneration. The bank explains that 50% of any variable reward earned will be paid in cash and 50% will be provided in performance rights vesting evenly over four years. A dividend equivalent payment will be made only on vested rights.

The Long Term Variable Reward includes an annual grant of up to 130% of fixed remuneration provided in performance rights which are not dividend eligible.

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