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Can Australia and New Zealand Banking Group “Googlise” itself?

What: Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ASX: ANZ) finished Tuesday’s trading session 3% higher.

The gains made it the best performing of the four majors with Westpac Banking Corp (ASX: WBC) in second place, recording a rise of 2.5%.

While there could have been a number of reasons for ANZ Bank’s shares performing the best, a contributing factor was probably the announcement by the group that it had appointed Maile Carnegie to the role of Group Executive Digital Banking.

So What: What makes this appointment so interesting is that Ms Carnegie has left her role as Managing Director (MD) of Google’s Australian and New Zealand (ANZ) operations to take up the job.

Ms Carnegie’s role at ANZ will see her “lead the strategic development and delivery of a superior digital experience for the bank’s eight million retail, commercial and institutional customers, as well as for its staff.”

Now What: The shift to the internet has created a unique set of challenges for not just Australian banks, but banks across the globe. These challenges include rethinking their approach to customer service, dealing with legacy information technology systems and dealing with the challenges that come from disruptive technologies such as peer-to-peer lending.

Digital technology is undoubtedly at the heart of future growth drivers for banks and the need to remain at the cutting edge will be a necessity given the continuous innovation and disruption occurring across the financial services sector.

Given Ms Carnegie’s vast experience not just in the digital space but specifically from managing a competitor in the form of Google her appointment by ANZ look like a clever move.

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Motley Fool contributor Tim McArthur has no position in any stocks mentioned. Unless otherwise noted, the author does not have a position in any stocks mentioned by the author in the comments below. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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