Mercer appoints Innovation Leader, Post Retirement
Mercer has announced the appointment of William Burkitt as a leader for innovation in Mercer’s wealth business, focusing on post retirement, senior care and living in Australia.
Burkitt joins Mercer from ANZ where, for the past five years, he has held the role of head of investment product and research. Prior to this, he held a number of senior research positions at UBS Wealth Management Australia and Skandia Investment Group.
Commenting on his appointment, Simon Eagleton, Mercer’s institutional wealth leader, Pacific, said: “We are thrilled to welcome Will to the team to drive innovation in this space, in support of our broader growth agenda."
He added: "His passion for improving the wellbeing of Australians during their post-retirement years will ensure Mercer continues to provide leading-edge solutions that address the significant economic and social challenges that exist for the ageing population.”
An advocate for evolution in the retirement system: Q&A with Mercer's William Burkitt
- What initially attracted you towards a career in finance?
My father was a stock broker, so I was introduced at an early age to the concepts of investing and finance. Following school, I worked full time as an accountant while completing a Bachelor of Economics part-time. It wasn’t long after that I had come to the realisation that accounting was a little too binary for my liking. Luckily enough this was at the same time that I was approached by James Burkitt and Chris Page, the joint founders of Rainmaker, to join them. This was my first introduction to working within the financial services industry and it was from there that I grew to value the importance of professional investment management and financial savings discipline.
My passion for aged-care and living was inspired by my mother. As a child growing up in Darwin, and through my adolescent years, I watched my mother manage Red Cross Home Care for the Northern Territory. It was her care, expertise and dedication that grounded my passion for supporting seniors for their care and living needs during their retirement years.
- Can you tell us a little about your new role as Innovation Leader, Post Retirement with Mercer?
Understanding the options and making the best decisions for ensuring retirement income availability, and separately the primary needs of care and living for someone throughout their senior years, and for their families and carers, is complex, emotional and expensive. Already there are 400 people turning 75 years old every day in Australia and this is continuing to accelerate with the Baby Boomer generation retiring.
At a time when the options available to decide amongst is increasing in complexity and the Government is transitioning to more of a consumer pays funding model. I fundamentally believe that Australians will be much better served with a tighter integration between the aged care industry and the financial services industry which offers easier to access and relevant support services.
Mercer is in a unique position to leverage its range of expertise across research and investments, career and insurance businesses to provide a new range of integrated solutions and thought leadership for Australian’s as they transition through their retiring and post retirement phases of life. I’m fortunate enough to be joining Mercer as a leader in developing and offering leading differentiated solutions in support senior Australian’s needs.
Innovation Leader, Post Retirement