The Impacts of the Global Financial Crisis ('GFC') Continue to Present an Interesting Challenge for Company Secretaries to Navigate.

Suzanna Dabski, Westpac Banking Corporation, Australia
Rachel Saffron, Westpac Banking Corporation, Australia
Tim Hartin, Group Company Secretary, Westpac Banking Corporation, Australia

The impacts of the Global Financial Crisis (“GFC”) continue to present an interesting challenge for company secretaries to navigate. In the wake of the GFC, an ever-changing and uncertain corporate governance landscape has evolved, resulting in the continuing rise in prominence of the role of a company secretary and an increasing focus by boards on organisational corporate governance practices. This paper will explore how the current climate presents an opportunity for company secretaries to showcase the value that company secretarial teams can bring to organisations through corporate governance thought-leadership and the adoption of innovative approaches to company secretarial practice.

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Australia Finance Banking & Finance August 2014 Vol. 7, No. 28, Summer 2014

Suzanna Dabski

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Rachel Saffron

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Tim Hartin

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Tim Hartin has been Group Company Secretary of Westpac Banking Corporation since July 2011 and is responsible for the management and oversight of the Westpac Banking Corporation Board and over 250 of the Westpac Group’s subsidiary boards. Tim joined Westpac in 2006 as Counsel (Corporate Core) and later held the role of Head of Legal (Risk Management & Workouts). Before joining Westpac, Tim was a Consultant with Gilbert + Tobin, specialising in providing corporate advisory services to listed companies and was a transactional lawyer for a number of years in Herbert Smith’s corporate, and corporate finance division (London) and with Henderson Boyd Jackson W.S. (Edinburgh). Tim’s extensive experience, gained in-house and advising Australian, UK and international listed and unlisted clients, enables him to advise on a diverse range of corporate matters including corporate law and corporate governance, mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, capital markets, corporate restructures, risk management, compliance and banking and financial services. Tim is an international lawyer and company secretary being a triple qualified solicitor in Scotland, England & Wales and Australia. He holds a number of tertiary qualifications, including a LLB (Hons) with options in French Honours and a Diploma of Legal Practice (Aberdeen University).

Westpac Banking Corporation

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Westpac is Australia's oldest Bank. Westpac has branches and affiliates throughout Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific region and maintains offices in key financial centres around the world including London, New York, Hong Kong and Singapore. As at 31 March 2008 the Westpac Group employed approximately 29,000 people in Australia, New Zealand and around the world. As at 31 March 2008, Westpac Banking Corporation had global assets of $402 billion. Westpac is ranked in the top 10 listed companies by market capitalisation on the Australian Securities Exchange Limited (ASX).

Australia Finance Banking & Finance August 2014 Vol. 7, No. 28, Summer 2014
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