EISS former chief executive, Alex Hutchison, says it was the “right time” for him to resign from the energy industry superannuation fund but that it was a result of a “calculated smear campaign”.
Hutchison resigned from the role after nine years last week which some media reports said followed an investigation into excessive sponsorship and bullying complaints.
“It was the right time for me to resign from EISS Super but regrettably my decision was brought forward by a calculated smear campaign, which was targeting me and my family. The pressure on my family had become unbearable,” he said.
“My family, like many Australian families, has always been involved with community-level organisations and it has been implied that their community involvement and service in some way led to a conflict of interest with sponsorships undertaken by EISS Super.
“This is untrue. All sponsorships and marketing activities were undertaken in a proper manner during my time as CEO.
“I am proud of my record at EISS Super and I remain a committed member of the fund.”
Hutchison said as part of the transformation of the fund after it became public offer, he recommended and the board approved a marketing strategy designed to raise brand awareness, from a low base, to retain EISS members and to attract new members.
“The strategy was multi-faceted. In addition to higher profile initiatives (such as our involvement with the NRL), we also, like many funds, supported local sports and community organisations in the areas where our current and prospective members live and work,” he said.
“I remain proud of the fact that in my time at EISS Super member fees did not rise, our funds under management doubled in size and we were on track to merge with another industry fund, which would further reduce costs to members while retaining the high-touch service model. When I left a memorandum of understanding had been signed.”