: Public Bank Chairman, Tan Sri Teh Hong Piow, will retire on 1 January 2019.
This news is significant as it heralds an important milestone for Malaysia’s banking sector, where founders of banks are no longer part of the organization that they have built, signaling an industry that is slowly maturing.
Tan Sri Teh founded Public Bank on 30 Dec 1965. Under his stewardship, the bank has grown to become the nation’s third largest bank in terms of assets. It is also the country’s strongest bank in offering extremely competitive unit trust products.
Public Bank has grown this large under Tan Sri Teh’s stewardship without the need to grow inorganically via significant mergers and acquisitions. An achievement in its own right when compared against peer banks.
It is critical to note however, that the banking group is not completely cutting its ties with its founder as Tan Sri Teh will assume the title Chairman-emeritus beginning 1 January 2019. The bestowment of such title is not common in the banking sector. It is assumed that this role will not have any executive designation associated with it, and if anything, a merely ceremonious one only.
Tan Sri Teh is also the non-executive chairman of Public Bank subsidiaries: Public Islamic Bank Berhad and Public Investment Bank Berhad. He will resign from these posts on 1 Jan 2018, but the banking group says he will stay on as non-executive director with effect from that date.