Ex-Mirvac boss Nick Collishaw still waiting for answers on sudden departure

Two-and-a-half months after he was unceremoniously sacked as Mirvac CEO, Nick Collishaw says he is still waiting for an explanation for his  sudden dismissal.

Collishaw’s last day at Mirvac was October 31 with new CEO Susan Lloyd-Hurwitz taking on the role this week.

In an interview with the Australian Financial Review, Collishaw described his abrupt dismissal as “bizarre”.

He said he was told of his dismissal on the morning of August 15, the same day Mirvac made the announcement to the ASX and also when it named Lloyd-Hurwitz as his successor.

Collishaw says his performance as CEO over four years – including guiding Mirvac through the worst of the GFC - did not warrant his sudden dismissal.

However he did not endorse a campaign by some Mirvac shareholders to unseat chairman James Mackenzie.

Commenting on his dismissal, Collishaw said: “[It is] pretty bizarre of a chairman to dismiss the CEO on the same day he presents the new CEO,” he said.

“The reasons for my departure remain unclear.”

On the morning of his dismissal Collishaw said he had a brief conversation with MacKenzie.

“He just said that the board has decided to go in a different direction and we think there is a better person to lead the company.”

Collishaw said he he had no intention of challenging the decision.

“I knew it wasn’t worth arguing, once [MacKenzie] had made his mind up. He is the chairman and wields ultimate power,” Collishaw said.

Collishaw delivered a 2012 full year profit of $416 million a 128% increase on the previous financial year including a $21 million profit from the sale of Mirvac’s hotel management business.

Collishaw called the results “very pleasing” and said they had been achieved at a time when “many parts of the property market are not buoyant”.

Not pleasing enough for chairman James MacKenzie and the Mirvac board who had already announced Collishaw’s dismissal six days earlier.

Mirvac shareholders will have the opportunity to put further questions to MacKenzie and Lloyd-Hurwitz at it AGM next week on November 15 in Sydney.

Larry Schlesinger

Larry Schlesinger

Larry Schlesinger was a property writer at Property Observer


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