Born in India, raised in England and now an Australian, incoming MyState chairman Vaughn Richtor has worked closely with his predecessor Miles Hampton on the board since late 2019.
Mr Richtor has held CEO roles in Australia, India and Asia, after joining ING in London in 1991. He was the founding CEO of branchless bank ING Direct Australia, building it to the fifth largest retail banking business in the country.
Mr Richtor chose MyState because “I like transformation and change,” and “there’s a rich customer centric culture, a capable team and strong home base in Tasmania. The elements needed to achieve our business plans are already in place.”
You and Brett Morgan go back a few years. What sets him apart?
When I met Brett, he was a young man and a couple of things were obvious. He stood up for what he believed in, was bright, capable, mature for his years. Brett has courage and a very calm nature.
What can the pair of you achieve?
It’s very clear what we have to achieve – the strategy that management developed and the Board approved, which seeks to accelerate growth in the customer base and loan book.
What’s your secret for success?
Focus on making sure the strategy is carried through the whole organisation. Putting the customer at the heart of the business and translate to what it means for every person, every day. We have great people in the organisation – we need to harness their potential to deliver our business plans.
How do you keep MyState’s Tasmanian identity as you push towards the mainland?
A key opportunity is to take our strong customer advocacy to a broader market. We have a very positive organisational culture – we need to maintain and strengthen that. We must strive to do the right things for customers, provide opportunities for our people to learn and grow their capabilities, and make a positive contribution to the communities we operate in. The outcome will be a growing business with solid returns for our shareholders.
What do you love doing outside work?
Apart from music I have a young grandson so I’m getting fit again chasing him around. I like sport, especially cricket. I quite enjoy antique auctions with my wife.
When India, England and Australia play each other at cricket who do you support?
I am not going to answer that question. That will incriminate me.
Your idea of luxury?
I am not very driven by “things”. I like achieving. It is fun climbing mountains, not sitting at the top admiring the view. I tend to look at the utility of things so, for example, I have a Fender Stratocaster and a Gibson Les Paul but at the moment I’m playing a $100 dollar guitar I bought in a charity shop because it plays well.
Did you ever give music a serious crack?
When you’re fifteen years old and your best friend picks up a guitar and starts playing, you think that’s cool. But you realise your limitations very quickly. 50 years later I’m still trying and not very good.
Top business tip?
Do the best you can today and strive to be better tomorrow.