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Fidelity appoints new chief executive

Fidelity recruits its new chief executive from general insurer Suncorp.

Friday, July 21st 2023, 10:33AM 5 Comments

Fidelity Life has appointed Campbell Mitchell as its new chief executive replacing Melissa Cantell who left earlier this year to take up a role with Non.

As Suncorp’s chief customer officer, Mitchell is accountable for general insurance revenue and customer experience, marketing, brand and sustainability across general and life insurance (including Asteron Life), while building strong relationships with Suncorp’s distribution network of partners and brokers.

Prior to insurance, Mitchell had a successful career in the media industry, first as a journalist in New Zealand and the UK, before progressing into executive roles in digital, marketing, sales and strategy with Fairfax Media / Stuff and NewsCorp in Australia.

Mitchell will join Fidelity Life in October from Suncorp New Zealand, where he is currently chief customer officer. Ian Clancy will remain as acting chief executive until Mitchell joins.

Fidelity Life chairman Brian Blake says a robust process determined that Mitchell was the best fit to lead the company.

“The board is delighted with Campbell’s appointment. We’re impressed with his strong track record of enabling high performing teams and leading transformation projects. He has held executive responsibilities for a broad range of functions at Suncorp, including customer, sales, claims, operations, marketing and corporate affairs, as well as being acting chief executive of Suncorp New Zealand from time to time."

“However the fit with our business, our culture and our team is equally important, and that’s where Campbell clearly stood out.”

In his LinkedIn profile Mitchell says he is "anchored by a deep understanding of, and passion for, the customer."

He goes on to say he has a "proven record as a transformational, results-oriented and collaborative executive leader of diverse and cross-functional teams. Success in improving team engagement and alignment internally and increasing customer and consumer value externally."

He lists his traits as a strategic and innovative thinker, balancing strong analytical skills with bold creativity and has had new product successes in digital, mobile and social. 

He is an "award winning marketer recognised for brand, membership, sponsorship, digital, events and content marketing successes."

Most recently he was recognised as Insurance Leader of the Year at the 2021 ANZIIF Insurance Industry Awards for Collaboration and Advocacy in bringing New Zealand's new Natural Disaster Response model to life.

Tags: Fidelity Life

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Comments from our readers

On 28 July 2023 at 11:25 am j sanderson said:
Good appointment and seems like someone who understands customer needs and the role of advisers.

The decline of Fidelity and AMPesque attitude to advisers has been interesting but disappointing and one hopes this can be reversed.

The attitude was exemplified when the sales head at Fidelity called new business a vanity measure in a Goodreturns interview as a way of justifying the poor sales. Methinks new business is more likely a response to how an insurer is meeting customer needs and supporting advisers.
On 28 July 2023 at 12:16 pm From the Benchs said:
Yes Decline of FID is a shame . Driven by the board and a former ex Suncorp employee who was bought in post Milton . Seems to be a business now focused on two strategic partners . IFA channel is now not a focus
On 31 July 2023 at 1:11 pm Do what is right said:
I agree with j sanderson, Fidelity have 'lost their way' it would seem. They appear to be of the mind that advisers are a necessary evil rather than an asset to their business. It will be interesting to see if they can change that view with new leadership.
On 1 August 2023 at 2:03 pm whakatane fran said:
agree broadly with the sentiments above

The decline of Fid is not a shame per se but a perfectly understandable market reaction to a manufacturer that has lost its way.

The leadership at AIA and Chubb seemed to have turned things around so there is a great opportunity for the Fid CEO

Key points for me is that this reinforces

Importance of needing something relevant and competitive for customers - the buzz word at Fid has been transformation but that is just an internal thing and not that relevant to the consumer

Importance of relationships - the commentator above do what is right has it spot on and Fid seem to have distribution team with unusual ideas

Tone from the leadership team - refer J Sanderson comments

Underwriting and claims are core to what is provided to the customer - Fid were on a roll 5 to 10 years ago but lost some key industry experts to competitors

On 3 August 2023 at 3:19 pm Advice4Life said:
@from the benchs. I wish you had the internal fortitude to post your own name and the person you are obviously being disrespectful toward in your observations.

I have been in the New Zealand industry coming up 20 years and I found Nadine one of the most genuine leaders and advocate for 3rd party distribution I have seen in my corporate and advisory career.

I had a lot to do with Fidelity during that tenure, her and Adrian Riminton were an effective, honest and authentic team. They are still a key insurer who offer competitive solutions and underwriting, but like all insurers, they aren't perfect.

In my humble opinion where Fidelity has been lacking in recent years is the failure to implement technology which inhibited their ability to be innovative and nimble in developing product and solutions.

The entrepreneurial nature of BDMs 10+ years ago has also been lost on the industry and now it seems you need to be a compliance expert, auditor or health and fitness coach to be considered for a BDM role.

A real shame on the industry i love.

Carl Drummond - Advice4Life

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