Suncorp-Promina merger to birth new CIO?

The multi-billion dollar merger of financial services giants Suncorp and Promina looks set to create a new chief information officer role at what would be one of the nation's largest companies. A discrete CIO portfolio reporting directly to the CEO position to be held by current Suncorp boss John Mulcahy at the potential new AU$20 billion company was revealed as part of documents sent to the Australian Stock Exchange this morning.

The multi-billion dollar merger of financial services giants Suncorp and Promina looks set to create a new chief information officer role at what would be one of the nation's largest companies.

A discrete CIO portfolio reporting directly to the CEO position to be held by current Suncorp boss John Mulcahy at the potential new AU$20 billion company was revealed as part of documents sent to the Australian Stock Exchange this morning.

Speaking with ZDNet Australia, a Suncorp spokesperson emphasised the merger was still in the extremely early stages of planning, with any corporate structure yet to be finalised.

This morning's move comes just four and a half months after Suncorp realigned its corporate structure, lumping the IT function in with other departments such as Human Resources and Marketing.

The move came as then Suncorp IT chieftain Hemant Kogekar left the company. Suncorp executive Diana Eilert took over the new enlarged portfolio.

Promina is currently operating under an acting CIO after Rob Flannagan left the business in the last few months to manage the New Zealand operations of financial services group Tower.

The spokesperson was unable to immediately confirm the name of Promina's acting CIO.

If the merger goes ahead, the new CIO will have a huge integration project ahead of them, with the added burden of achieving cost savings in the area of IT through the consolidation of the back office functions of the two companies.

Suncorp's chief financial officer, Chris Skilton, said in this morning's presentation that the merger was expected to deliver net savings of AU$225 million per annum, with savings expected to come from the consolidation of IT as well as other areas.

Total implementation costs of this plan are expected to be circa AU$395 million. The merged company would have around 16,000 staff in Australia and New Zealand, with more than eight million customers and over 450 offices, branches and agencies across the two countries.

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