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Suncorp chief quits early

Suncorp chief quits early

(Australia) - The chief executive of leading Australian regional banking and insurance group Suncorp Metway has announced his resignation two years earlier than expected. Shares in Queensland-based Suncorp fell sharply on the news that Steve Jones had quit the company.

"I firmly believe that a chief executive charged with implementing a strategic vision must be instrumental in its design. The time is right for me to move on so that can happen," Jones said in a statement.

Jones, who extended his contract a year ago and was expected to leave at the end of 2004, has been credited with successfully integrating the previously publicly owned Suncorp with privately held Metway, which merged in 1996.

Suncorp Metway recently reported a 21 percent profit fall to A$311 million for the year to June 30, with the company hit by the same sliding investment returns which have affected all insurers.
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