Suncorp Invests In Vehicle Sharing Company

Suncorp has invested $1.5 million in peer-to-peer car rental company Car Next Door, and will have a board observer seat as part of a $10 million funding round in order to better understand changing vehicle use.

“We know the traditional way Australians own and use cars is evolving and this partnership will allow us to learn and better service our customer needs,” said Gary Dransfield, Chief Executive Officer Insurance at Suncorp.

Car Next Door started in 2013 with 20 cars and 60 borrowers, allowing vehicle owners to earn money by renting them out. Since then, more than 3000 cars have been shared through the platform.

Suncorp says the partnership will include the development of innovative insurance products and joint promotional activity.

“We can support Car Next Door’s members with insurance, and we can also introduce our customers to a new way to safely and easily rent out their cars in their own neighbourhoods,” said Dransfield.

Steve Johnston, CEO of Suncorp Group, said that embedding digital and data in product design and distribution remains a key area of focus.

“This has most recently been demonstrated as we internally pilot Bingle Go, a market-first insurance product designed specifically for customers who rely on more than their car for their everyday commute,” said Johnston.

Johnston also said that the reinsurance team was continuing to review options ahead of a number of multi-year programs expiring at the end of June.

“Based on discussions with the reinsurers we remain confident there will be strong demand for Suncorp’s program,” said Johnston.

Suncorp Banking And Wealth CEO Moves To RACQ

Suncorp Banking and Wealth CEO David Carter has resigned from his post at Suncorp to become Group CEO at RACQ.

Carter will leave the company in early 2020 after 14 years at Suncorp and over three years in the CEO role. Carter joined the company in 2006 as Executive General Manager for advice solutions and, since then, has held a number of leadership roles, both in Australia and New Zealand.

“[David] has been a great contributor to the leadership team, and on behalf of everyone at Suncorp, we wish him well in his new role,” said Steve Johnston, CEO of Suncorp Group. “We are now well placed to continue to build on this success and leverage the investments we have made.”

The bank has implemented some customer initiatives under Carter’s leadership including Apple and Google Pay, the staged rollout of the New Payments Platform, and building the foundations for Suncorp’s digital banking strategy.

Suncorp said it has begun a robust recruitment process and was considering candidates from Australia and overseas to find Carter’s replacement.

“It is an exciting time for Mr Carter to take on this role leading Queensland’s largest club when the organisation has never been stronger and where it now has almost 1.8 million Queensland members in more than 70 per cent of the state’s homes.” said Bronwyn Morris, RACQ President and Chair.

“RACQ’s status as one of Australia’s most trusted brands and the diversity of its business lines makes it a truly unique organisation,” said Carter. “I look forward to leading Queensland’s largest club and market-leading financial services companies.”

Suncorp Sells Capital S.M.A.R.T, ACM Parts To AMA Group

Suncorp has announced the signing of a binding agreement to sell 90 per cent of its interest in Capital S.M.A.R.T to collision repair company AMA Group for $420 million.

Suncorp will retain a 10 per cent interest in the business and a seat on the subsidiary board.

Group CEO, Steve Johnston, said the transaction was in the best interests of customers, shareholders and the business.

“The increasing complexity of repairs is driving significant change in the smash repair and parts procurement industry, and the divestment means Suncorp can focus on its core Insurance and Banking operations,” said Johnston. “Importantly, the agreement maintains Suncorp’s competitive advantage and we look forward to working closely with AMA as an ongoing partner.”

Suncorp also announced the complete sale of its automotive parts supplier, ACM Parts, to AMA for $20 million.

The transactions are expected to complete by 31 October 2019.

Suncorp Makes Acting CEO Permanent

Suncorp has appointed acting CEO Steve Johnston as the new permanent head of the company.

Chairman Christine McLoughlin says Suncorp weighed the merits of global and local candidates before confirming Johnston as CEO and Managing Director.

Johnston was Chief Financial Officer until May, when he switched roles following previous CEO Michael Cameron’s sudden exit.

Announcing an 83.5 per cent fall in full-year profit last month, Johnston admitted his predecessor’s so-called ‘marketplace strategy’ had confused customers and halted its rollout to refocus on banking and insurance.

Deputy Chief Financial Officer Jeremy Robson, who has been acting CFO since May, will continue in the role while Suncorp considers internal and external candidates.