Former JBWere chief asked for year’s salary as redundancy pay

Paul Heath’s compensation demand was for $377,268, plus interest dating back to July last year. Photo: Andrew Quilty’A rather inflated sense of his own capabilities’

The outgoing former chief executive of JBWere demanded almost $400,000 in redundancy pay following a ­restructure he claimed diminished his role.

According to a Fair Work Commission document, former JBWere chief executive Paul Heath sought the redundancy payment after a restructure that brought the famous broker under tighter control of its parent company National Australia Bank (NAB).

The commission on Tuesday threw out Mr Heath’s claim that he was ­entitled to a redundancy claim under the bank’s collective agreement with the Financial Services Union.

Contained in the documents is a summary of Mr Heath’s compensation demand against the bank. The demand includes a claim for $377,268, plus interest dating back to July 2013.

At the time Mr Heath left the bank in mid-2013, his base salary was $400,000 a year with the possibility of short-term incentive bonuses worth $800,000.

Industry sources confirmed that senior executives at the other big banks are not covered by their collective agreements making NAB unique among its peers. NAB argued successfully that Mr Heath had been told he could remain as chief executive of JBWere under the restructure or accept a  position that would have amounted to a promotion.

A NAB spokesman said the company was pleased with the judgment but declined to comment further. Mr Heath did not return calls on Wednesday.

He had argued that as chief executive of JBWere since 2009 he had been responsible for profit and loss in a ­business that generated revenue of about $150 million a year.

He also managed 450 people and was responsible for dealing with ultra-high net worth clients.

Under the new structure he would lose some of those responsibilities and he believed he would drop down the bank’s hierarchy.

The documents also lay bare the ­difficulties NAB was having integrating JBWere’s information technology ­system. NAB paid $99 million on the ­acquisition of JBWere.

But the cost of the IT integration project had blown out to $85 million and Mr Heath complained that blame for the project’s difficulties was being sheeted home to him.

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