Formerly comprising ANZ’s wealth management division, the clear and final separation was necessary for sale of the life business to Zurich and the broader pensions and investments (P&I) and aligned adviser businesses to Insignia (formerly IOOF).
“To ultimately separate and complete the sale and subsequent separation transactions, sweeping and complex changes were required across the life insurance, superannuation and the advice businesses to achieve the simplified ANZ.”
The multi-year project, a key stage of ANZ’s strategy to simplify the bank, was completed on time and on budget. It was charged with removing the superannuation business from the life company which involved transferring products, customers, processes, systems and staff. It was like unravelling a pot of spaghetti into separate bowls.
Overall, the project involved the transition of 3,500 staff, $A50 billion of funds and more than 3 million customer accounts.
Prior to 2019, ANZ Wealth was highly integrated both operationally and legally across distribution channels, administration and servicing, investment management and all enabling functions including technology and finance.
The initial decision to sell the Wealth division did not contemplate a split of Life Insurance from Pensions, Investments & Advice. To ultimately separate and complete the sale and subsequent separation transactions, sweeping and complex changes were required across the Life Insurance, Superannuation and the Advice businesses to achieve the simplified ANZ.
Moreover, since the transactions were originally announced in late 2017, the project had to manage the Australian Royal Commission into financial services, regulatory action against one of the acquirers and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Dealing with the complexity of the transaction and the adversity of the pandemic was certainly a challenge. As was the task of separating technology, migrating data and creating new systems.
And, crucially, ANZ now has no ongoing service obligations – this has been a completely clean separation unlike similar transactions in the industry.