ASB CEO Barbara Chapman to step down at Easter; Says time feels right to hand over to next generation of leadership

ASB has announced its chief executive, Barbara Chapman, will retire at Easter next year.

Having been at the helm of the bank since April 2011, Chapman says “the time feels right to hand over to the next generation of leadership”.

“Being chief executive of ASB has undoubtedly been the highlight of my career and I shall always be proud of what we have achieved,” she says.

“It has been a privilege to work with such passionate people over the years and I will continue to watch their careers with interest.

“ASB is set on a strong course for the future as we continue our focus on digital transformation, customer service and fostering a culture of collaboration across the bank.

“In terms of my own future, I am just excited to be able to take some time to think about areas of future interest and challenge.”

ASB Chairman Gavin Walker says Chapman, who is 57 years’ old, will leave a lasting legacy at ASB.

“Barbara’s decision to retire caps a remarkable career of continuous service to ASB and the Commonwealth Bank Group more broadly. She has been a passionate and effective chief executive for ASB and its people, successfully leading the organisation through a period of unprecedented change and market disruption,” he says.

“During her tenure, ASB has continued to transform into a digitally-focused organisation with a renewed commitment to delivering unbeatable customer experiences across all its channels. She has played a key role in growing ASB’s annual profits from $568 million in 2011 to more than $1 billion in the most recent financial year-end.

“The Board, and CBA as shareholder, are grateful for Barbara’s leadership and dedication to ASB’s long-term success. She has built an outstanding leadership team that will continue to seamlessly execute the Bank’s strategy to achieve its goals and vision.”

The ASB Board has started a recruitment process to ensure a seamless leadership transition.

Background 

Since 1994 Chapman has held a number of diverse senior executive roles with the Commonwealth Bank Group of companies, starting her career with the group as chief manager marketing at ASB. 

In 2004, Chapman moved into the role of managing director and CEO of Sovereign Assurance, the group’s New Zealand life insurance business. She then crossed the Tasman on secondment to the Commonwealth Bank in 2006, joining the group executive team there as group executive, human resources and group services.

Chapman is a former chair of Oxfam New Zealand and a former director of Oxfam International. She was also an inaugural trustee of the New Zealand Equal Opportunities Trust and was its chair for several years. She was New Zealand’s inaugural “Marketer of the Year” and has received numerous awards for innovative and effective marketing throughout her career.