Pepper Money Announces New Zealand Country Head

Posted 27-05-2022

Pepper Money has today appointed Campbell Smith as the new Country Head for New Zealand, commencing Monday 30 May 2022.

With over 20 years’ experience in the banking and financial services industry, Campbell Smith has substantial, executive leadership, financial, and operational experience, having worked in various commercial functions across mortgages and asset finance.

Mr Smith’s most recent role was Director and Country Manager at LeasePlan, prior to which he worked at organisations including Turners Automotive, Westpac, and Deloitte. Mr Smith has strong industry networks and has been an executive committee member of the Financial Services Federation – New Zealand’s non-bank industry body and lobby group during 2018 – 2021.

Pepper Money’s CEO Mario Rehayem said, “Following the accelerated growth of Pepper Money in the New Zealand market, Campbell was chosen after an extensive and extremely competitive selection process.”

“This newly appointed role marks an exciting new chapter for Pepper Money, and I look forward to working with Campbell to ensure we continue to grow our presence and extend our reach in the New Zealand market.”

“Campbell champions the values that align with Pepper Money. His leadership style is hands-on, energetic and he demonstrates an attitude of can do and empowerment – which comes as a requisite for effective leadership.”

Ultimately, this new leadership role highlights Pepper Money’s investment in its core capabilities according to Mr Rehayem:

“We want to continue delivering great outcomes for our Kiwi customers, advisers, and our partners, so we’re persistently investing in our people, products, and digital capabilities to keep up with the needs of the market.” Mario Rehayem

Pepper Money’s General Manager, Mortgages and Commercial Lending, Barry Saoud echoed Mr Rehayem on the evolving needs of the market: “Following the events of the past two years and the increasing pressures on Kiwi families, our real life approach to lending is needed now more than ever, with customers looking for loan options that have been built to suit their circumstances.”

“We’ve built a great brand that our Kiwi customers and advisers trust, with a relentless focus of quick turnarounds and very high-quality products and exceptional service.”

In line with Mr Smith’s new appointment, current National Sales Manager in New Zealand, Michelle Sargeant will relocate to the Australian market following a successful four years based in Auckland. Mr Saoud added, “Ms Sargent played an instrumental role in establishing the New Zealand operations and will return to the Australian market to take up the role of Head of Sales Operations,” Mr Saoud said.

Commenting on his appointment, Mr Smith said he was excited to be taking on the role. “It is a privilege to join the highly respected Pepper Money team and I’m delighted to be working alongside clever minds and can-do attitude behind this market leading non-bank,” Mr Smith said.

“With the support of the board, Mario Rehayem, Barry Saoud, and the wider team, I am absolutely committed to helping Pepper Money continue to build on the strong progress achieved under Michelle’s leadership and continuing to deliver rewarding outcomes for our advisers and customers alike,” he said.

“Pepper Money is in great shape, and I look forward to leading us through our next strategic growth phase, delivering real life solutions and the best possible experience for all who work with us; so we can help more Kiwi borrowers succeed.”

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