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Regional bank appoints new COO

by Reporter4 minute read
Arjan Bloemer

Toowoomba-based lender Heritage Bank has announced the appointment of a new chief operating officer, effective immediately.

Heritage Bank has appointed Arjan Bloemer to the role of chief operating officer (COO), replacing Kevin Potter, who has moved to the role of chief customer officer

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Mr Bloemer joins Heritage from global professional services firm Accenture Australia, where he served as managing director.

The new COO has held several roles in banking and consulting, including roles as director of international banking and markets at the Royal Bank of Scotland in London from 2011 to 2014, and as executive director of consultancy firm Ernst & Young Australia from 2014 to 2017. 

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Mr Bloemer began his career at Dutch bank MeesPierson, before assuming the role of head of operations at digital European lender Alex Vermogensbank.  

“Arjan brings a wealth of experience to the COO role, particularly in digital banking and in retail banking transformation projects. He is a welcome addition to our senior executive group,” Heritage CEO Peter Lock said.

Mr Bloemer claimed that his experience in the industry would help him deliver better outcomes for Heritage’s customers.

“My career focus has been on major retail banking transformation projects. This has included implementing robotics, artificial intelligence tools, chatbots and Six Sigma process optimisation,” the appointee said.

“There are real opportunities to use my expertise to help deliver a better experience for customers at Heritage.

“What particularly attracted me to this role was the people and the culture at Heritage. Everyone is absolutely committed to the best interests of the customers and willing to do things differently to deliver a better outcome. It’s a really positive and upbeat environment.”

The appointee replaces Kevin Potter as COO, who last month became chief customer officer following the retirement of long-serving head of retail Paul Francis. 

Mr Francis announced his retirement after a 28-year career that saw him introduce the group’s mortgage broker distribution channel. 

Mr Bloemer will be based in Heritage’s head office in Toowoomba.

“Before coming to Australia, [my family] lived in a smaller city quite similar to Toowoomba. We’re really looking forward to being part of such a great community,” Mr Bloemer said.

[Related: Heritage Bank stalwart to retire]

Regional bank appoints new COO
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