Leadership Crisis In Forrest Empire As Andrew Hagger Steps Down

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After the former NAB executive Andrew Hagger left, Iron ore billionaire Andrew Forrest turned to John Hartman—his trusted lieutenant-to run his private businesses and philanthropic interests.

While the move was celebrated by many, a source close to the Forrest family said there was a leadership crisis in the Forrest empire. The source revealed that John Hartman is a very good person. Still, he has been given too much responsibility with no experience in corporate governance matters and the business development process.

Hartman- who worked as an executive from a big resource firm- is primarily seen as an asset playing second fiddle to Forrest’s vision. The source added that while they were sure that John would manage the transition well, he was not trained to run companies and make decisions on behalf of the billionaire.

“John has a great personality but is not a ‘good company man’. He is not the right person to lead Forrest’s empire at this point,” an insider said.

Forrest’s donation of $400 million to eradicate cancer was lauded by many. The source added that it was said that while they saw strategic metrics-driven decisions being made, no one would deny that at the end of the day, there was only one leader, and it was him.

“His mind is unparalleled in its vision and his commitment to serve the nation. He has done a lot for our country, but he needs to put himself in the right direction, too,” another insider said.

Hartman also oversees the Minderoo Foundation, a charity that Andrew Forrest and his wife Nicola established. The foundation aims to improve educational standards for Indigenous Australians and provide access to quality education for children from low-income families across the country. This is an essential task, but only a few hands have the vision.

Andrew Hagger’s stepping down gave Forrest a chance to return and be the leader the company always needed.

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