Double blow at the top for Mirvac as CEO Lloyd-Hurwitz joins chairman in quitting

Double blow at the top for Mirvac as CEO Lloyd-Hurwitz joins chairman in quitting

Susan Lloyd-Hurwitz

Mirvac Group (ASX: MGR) is facing a looming experience vacuum at the top with the announcement that the CEO Susan Lloyd-Hurwitz has joined chairman John Mulcahy in leaving the property giant.

While Mulcahy’s departure was announced at last year’s AGM, the decision by Lloyd-Hurwitz to resign from Mirvac’s top job after 10 years in the role was revealed to the market today.

Lloyd-Hurwitz has announced she will leave Mirvac on 30 June 2023, just six months after Mulcahy’s planned departure on 1 January next year.

The exit may also signify a setback for female executive representation in the ASX300, which a report last month revealed was moving at a "glacial pace" with nine in 10 line roles - the positions most likely leading to CEO appointments - held by men.

Mirvac non-executive director Rob Sindel has been previously named as Mulcahy’s successor at Mirvac. Although he brings 30 years of development industry experience to the role, including a stint as CEO of building products group CSR (ASX: CSR), Sindel was only appointed to the Mirvac board in 2020.

A search for Lloyd-Hurwitz’s replacement is under way with the CEO assuring the market that she will work towards a smooth transition for her successor.

The CEO revealed that she recently flagged with Mulcahy her intention to retire to allow a ‘long window for a smooth transition and continuity’ for the company.

“It was not an easy decision,” she says. “However, it is the right time to hand over to the next leaders of Mirvac to guide the group through its next phase.”

Mulcahy agrees it is the right time to leave and ‘hand the baton over to the next generation of leaders of Mirvac’.

“I have served on the board since 2009, and chair from 2013, and during this time the group has made significant progress on its strategy,” he says.

“Our forward-looking development pipeline of approximately $30 billion is increasingly spread across sectors, with Mirvac moving from a predominately residential and office developer to a recognised creator and curator of leading mixed-use precincts and places.

“Sue has been central to this success and has driven our growth and evolution over the past decade, transforming the group into one of Australia’s leading property groups.”

Mirvac posted a marginally higher net profit of $906 million in FY22, led by improved margins in its property development portfolio.

While FY22 posed significant challenges for Mirvac and the construction industry generally, Lloyd-Hurwitz progressed the company’s plans to sell $1.3 billion of non-core office and retail assets to focus on better growth opportunities such as build-to-rent projects.

Mulcahy heaped praise on Lloyd-Hurwitz’s leadership of the company over the past decade.

“In my many years of working in corporate Australia and working with many CEOs, I believe that Sue is a true leader of our time, and I have no doubt she will continue to achieve great things,” he says.

“I’m pleased to be leaving the group in such a strong position and in the safe hands of our new chair. Rob’s deep knowledge of the property industry and his extensive experience and skills positions him well to transition as chair.”

While Lloyd-Hurwitz’s future plans have not been made public, it is expected there will no shortage of offers from the corporate world seeking her leadership talents.

Mirvac’s shares were trading marginally lower at $1.94 at 10.47am AEDT.

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