CBD

A march down memory lane

A march down memory lane

Some are born bankers, others have bankerdom thrust upon them. And so it was for ANZ's chief teller, Mike Smith.

In an article reflecting on his speech to the bright young things graduating in finance and economics at Monash University, Smith found himself reminiscing about his own start in the business.

"I told them ... that I didn't grow up wanting to be a banker; I'm not sure many children dream of a steady career in banking! I was more interested in things military - but the lack of meritocracy and a time-served approach did not sit well with me," he says.

Life lessons for the newbies included the need to embrace change. "Leaving HSBC after such a long career to start again at ANZ, while daunting to uproot my family, was one of the most rewarding decisions of my professional life."

No disagreement there. Smith has trousered $20.5 million for his troubles over the past two years and ANZ investors will be asked to approve another $3.15 million in bonuses at its annual meeting next month.



Honestly, Rupert

More bargain Christmas ideas from the billionaire end of the wealth spectrum. Cleo bachelor of the year contender Rupert Murdoch tweeted about Rich Lowry's "fascinating" new book on his favourite US president - Lincoln Unbound: How an Ambitious Young Railsplitter Saved the American Dream - and How We Can do it Again.

"Surely our greatest, most interesting president," tweeted Rupert of old 'Honest Abe'.



Resourceful Rutila

What's in a name?

Plenty if it is Forge at the moment.

As Forge Group plunged more than 90 per cent on Thursday, a rather obscure explorer, Rutila Resources Ltd, was probably thanking its lucky stars at the name change from Forge Resources in September this year. Chairman Nick Curtis would be particularly pleased Rutila's share price was not sideswiped in any confusion - he owns more than one-third of the company. And it is one less distraction ahead of his main gig on Friday chairing rare earths miner Lynas Corp.

Curtis faces re-election to the board and probably more than a little flak over the $953,000 "termination payment" he took after stepping down as CEO but not as chairman.

Not a bad perk getting a termination payment and still being employed by the company.

Curtis probably has more important matters on his mind of course, like the future of his son Oliver Curtis who was committed this month to stand trial in the NSW Supreme Court for insider trading.

Curtis jnr - who is married to controversial PR queen Roxy Jacenko - will be arraigned in the Supreme Court in February.



AGM antics

It has been a big week in the AGM season and CBD felt it our duty to cover off on some of the penny-dreadfuls that may not have got the attention they deserved. First there is the phone booth AGM.

JAT Oil executive chairman, Tony Crimmins, offered apologies for the fact that he was the only board member to front its AGM this week. His cause was not helped by the fact that one of its three other directors, Richard Pritchard, stepped down the day before.

Southern Cross Exploration had the non-event extraordinary general meeting thanks to the fact that the mysterious Timothy Lebbon did not show up to the meeting he had requisitioned to have Boris Ganke removed as a director "with immediate effect".

The vote went 83.7 per cent against the resolution in Lebbon's absence.

Smackdown of the season goes to serial litigator Empire Oil & Gas. Its board - including CEO Craig Marshall - was wiped out by major shareholder ERM Power and the company recorded a massive 2.2 billion votes against its remuneration report versus 360 million in favour.

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