Updated: De Castro leaves AGL, takes consumer GM role at Vocus

Former GM of sales and marketing for AGL and NAB CMO joins ASX-listed telecoms player as part of a new operating structure

Sandra de Castro
Sandra de Castro

Sandra De Castro has left her role as GM of marketing and sales at AGL after just one year in favour of a new division business leadership position with Vocus Communications.

De Castro’s appointment as chief executive of consumer was announced yesterday as part of new divisional operating structure that sees the ASX-listed telecoms provider separating out the enterprise and government, and wholesale and international, consumer and New Zealand parts of its business.

De Castro has spent the past year at AGL, overseeing marketing, sales, consumer sales and loyalty teams. Upon joining the energy provider, she was tasked with helping it realise its digital transformation ambitions.

De Castro is best known for her work at NAB, where she spent four years as CMO and two years leading the banking group’s customer value proposition transformation. Prior to this, she spent years as a strategy consultant in the financial services space.

Alongside De Castro’s appointment, Vocus confirmed Michael Simmons, its current chief executive of enterprise and wholesale, will now lead the dedicated wholesale and international division. Current chief of consumer, Scott Carter, will move into the role of chief executive, enterprise and government.

Vocus group CEO, Geoff Horth, said the company’s acquisition of Nextgen had opened up new markets and presented significant growth opportunities across all business segments.

“The opportunities available in Vocus’ domestic wholesale business, combined with our investment in the Australia Singapore Cable, warrants the creation of a dedicated wholesale and international division and will ensure that we have the focus, products and service proposition to be the provider of choice to customers in this important market,” he said.

Horth singled our De Castro’s experience in leadership and customer-led digital transformation as key to her appointment.

“Sandra’s credentials and success in innovation and digital transformation brings invaluable experience to our executive team and will help drive the next phase of growth and customer centricity in our consumer division,” he said.

De Castro's departure from AGL followed a restructure of the customer markets business last year, an AGL spokesperson told CMO.

“The sales and marketing functions were split when the Customers Markets business was restructured last year to bring greater focus to value proposition development through personalisation and data, sales and distribution and digital, in an increasingly complex, competitive energy sector," the spokesperson said.

The decision saw Alison Wild appointed general manager of product and marketing, and Kellie Benda appointed general manager sales and go-to market.

“We are investing $300 million over three years in our Customer Experience Transformation (CXT) program to provide innovative products and services that give customers more control over their energy,”  the spokesperson added.

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