31 Jul 2018

New Kiwibank boss open to ideas and new technology

1:26 pm on 31 July 2018

Steve Jurkovich has just taken the helm at the country's fifth largest bank, having previously worked at ASB and Westpac banks.

Steve Jurkovich Kiwibank CEO

Steve Jurkovich Kiwibank CEO Photo: Supplied / Linkedin

Mr Jurkovich said he was looking to the future, not the past.

"The task in front of us is to make sure we're in the right spot with the relevant services, supporting the right people."

The state-owned Kiwibank has been under pressure in the past couple of years from having to write off $90 million because of a failed IT project.

It also disagreed with the Reserve Bank over [http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/business/351128/kiwi-group-s-profit-falls-after-troubled-it-project/

what securities could be used for reserve capital, and falling profits and rising costs.]

The bank also found itself with two new shareholders after the ACC and NZ SuperFund bought out some of NZ Post's stake.

Mr Jurkovich said Kiwibank had no choice but to invest in new technology projects, but had to ensure that it would deliver.

He said Kiwibank's New Zealand brand and state ownership was to its advantage.

"We've probably got the privilege that the public wants us to be even better, you know, they're our owners. Maybe customers look at us and expect more, and want us to do more, and I think that's a great thing," he said.

Mr Jurkovich said issues of sustainability and transparency were becoming more important for consumers, and he would also soon meet with the bank's shareholders and regulators to talk through strategies and priorities.

"We are going to be as open as we can be with them. We are going to take every chance we can to take on board the suggestions they have got for us."