David Cullen – GC Powerlist
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Australia 2022

Financials

David Cullen

Group General Counsel | AMP

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    Australia 2022

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    David Cullen

    Group General Counsel | AMP

    Team size:  105 

    What are the most significant cases or transactions that your legal team has recently been involved in? 

    AMP offers a wide range of financial products and financial services to a diverse customer base in Australia and internationally. These products and services are tightly regulated so, in addition to the usual busy BAU load, our legal and governance teams engage in frequent regulatory change projects. In addition to our regular work, over the past few years the AMP legal and governance team have been extremely busy across a range of high-profile matters, including, the sale of our life insurance company, AMP Life, to Resolution Life, the pending demerger of our investment management business, AMP Capital and engaging with our key Australian regulators, APRA, and ASIC, to resolve a range of legacy matters arising from the Financial Services Royal Commission held in 2018. We are also managing four class actions commenced against various AMP group entities in the aftermath of the Royal Commission.

    How do you feel the pandemic has changed the world of work for in-house counsel and the function of the general counsel?   

    For many years now, AMP has offered a “WeFlex” policy which allows our staff to agree with their leader when and how they will work. This has been an excellent value proposition for our staff, many of whom joined us from law firms where this kind of flexibility was the exception and not the norm. I think that the pandemic has entrenched this flexible mode of working which is a fantastic development for work-life balance and great for inclusion. Personally, I have enjoyed the flexibility it has given me to spend more time at home with my wife and teenage children and to convert commute time into much needed exercise time!

    From the perspective of the general counsel, the pandemic has forced us to be agile in terms of how we bring our teams together in a virtual environment to ensure that we maintain our great culture. It has also allowed us to shine more of a spotlight on wellbeing and mental health, particularly given the pressure that our Sydney-based was under during the extended lockdown last year.

    Looking forward, what technological advancements do you feel will impact the role of in-house legal teams in the future the most? 

    It is all about using technology to make our lawyers’ roles easier and allow them to devote more time to critical business problems. In late 2021, we adopted LawVu as our end-to-end matter triage, workflow and external tendering and billing system. We are excited by the wealth of data it will generate for us, and we are looking forward to utilising its reporting to make more data-driven decisions.

    In 2022, we are looking forward to exploring AI (Artificial Intelligence), particularly in automated contract reviews.

    David Cullen - Australia 2019

    Group general counsel | AMP

    What are the most important transactions and litigations that you have been involved in during the last two years? 2018 and 2019 have been two of the busiest on record...

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    David Cullen - Australia 2018

    Group general counsel | AMP

    Appointed as group general counsel in May 2018, David Cullen has been tasked with redeveloping the reputation of AMP Group as it responds to the controversies which have plagued the...

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