10/05/2022 - 09:22

HBF chief steps down

10/05/2022 - 09:22


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John Van Der Wielen is leaving HBF after five years as managing director.

HBF chief steps down
John Van Der Wielen has led HBF since 2017. Photo: Attila Csaszar

John Van Der Wielen is leaving HBF after five years as managing director.

Mr Van Der Wielen was hired by the Western Australia-based insurer in 2017 after a career in financial services which included stints with ANZ and Lloyds Banking Group.

He has overseen the not-for-profit fund's expansion into the eastern states in that time, typified by the launch of an advertising campaign in 2020 featuring an animated quokka.

Several major acquisitions have typified HBF's growth since then, including purchase of Queensland-based health insurer CUA Health and local allied-health services group Life Ready Health Group.

He will now focus on his positions on the board of Royal Flying Doctor Service Western Operations and as chair of the Future Health Research and Innovation Fund's advisory council.

"I am immensely proud of what our management team and people have achieved at HBF in the past five years," Mr Van Der Wielen said.

"HBF is a unique and progressive not-for-profit organisation.

"I have been privileged to have been able to lead its national expansion and several exciting new acquisitions.

"I am also proud that the HBF quokka has now become a well-known brand."

Chief transformation officer Simon Walsh will fill in for Mr Van Der Wielen in an interim capacity while an executive search is being undertaken.

HBF chair Diane Smith-Gander offered her thanks to Mr Van Der Wielen for his contributions to HBF over the last five years.

"Under John's leadership and with the support of the executive leadership team, HBF has truly established itself as a credible, national health insurance provider whose focus on its members is unrivalled," she said.


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