Ivan Power named inaugural NRF chief executive

Brandon How

Former Macquarie Group executive Ivan Power has been named the inaugural chief executive of the National Reconstruction Fund Corporation.

Mr Power, who has nearly 25 years’ experience in finance, investment banking and capital markets, was appointed to the key role on Thursday, ending a four-month search.

He will lead the corporation tasked with revitalising Australian manufacturing through the $15 billion industry fund stood up by the Albanese government last year.

Some of the companies that Mr Power has directly backed include open banking platform Basiq, Australian Droid and Robot, drone company InfraVision, and FinTech firm FlipPay.

His experiences includes 20 years at Macquarie Group, in both it’s Sydney and London office. He left the investment bank as its head of group development and analysis in December 2019.

Mr Power also spent time as an adviser to the Commonwealth Treasury, Department of Social Services, and Housing Australia, as well as the chair of several social enterprises.

More recently, he has worked as an investor and adviser at Lykaios Ventures, working with the founders of local tech startups.

NRFC chief executive Ivan Power and Industry and Science minister Ed Husic. Image: LinkedIn

Mr Power’s appointment follows an executive search process led by Johnson Partners, with the final decision made by the National Reconstruction Fund (NRF) Board after consultation with the Industry and Finance ministers.

Finance minister Katy Gallagher and Industry and Science minister Ed Husic both welcomed Mr Power’s appointment. Mr Husic described the NRFC chief executive as “an outstanding choice”.

“Our plan for a future made in Australia demands high-calibre stewardship of the $15 billion investment the NRF will make into growing our industrial muscle, and that is what Ivan’s extensive experience in financial markets and global investment brings,” Mr Husic said.

The first eight directors of the NRF Board, including its chair, were appointed in August 2023. The last member of the board was appointed in October.

NRFC chair Martijn Wilder said he is delighted to have a “chief executive of Ivan’s calibre to lead and build the NRFC”.

“Ivan’s experience advising early-stage companies, on national infrastructure and his passion for Australian industry will serve the NRFC well as we work alongside the Government and others to transform the Australian economy,” Mr Wilder said.

The NRF Corporation has now filled all its leadership positions, paving the way for first investments. These will be made in the form of equity, concessional loans, and guarantees across seven manufacturing priorities.

The seven industry priorities are renewables and low emission technologies, medical science, value-add in resources, enabling capabilities, defence capability, transport, and value-add in agriculture, forestry and fisheries.

Mr Power said he is humbled and excited to lead the NRFC and highlighted the importance of capitalising on Australia’s natural endowments to ensure Australia becomes “the natural home of industry and innovation”.

“Australia is blessed with incredible human, financial and natural resources that create abundant opportunities at this moment of significant technological, economic and geopolitical change,” Mr Power said.

“It’s a great time for the public and private sector to work together to support the growth and development of industries in Australia and capitalise upon these opportunities.

More to come

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