Australia stock market chief quits amid bribery probe
SYDNEY: The head of Australia's stock market operator resigned Monday, amid a police inquiry into bribery allegations at a gaming group he previously managed. Elmer Funke Kupper, ASX managing director and CEO since October 2011, previously headed Tabcorp -- which describes itself as one of the world's largest publicly listed gambling companies. It is currently being investigated over an alleged payment, reportedly Aus$200,000 (US$151,460) to a company run by relatives of Hun Sen, the prime minister of Cambodia where Tabcorp had been looking to expand. "I have done this in the interests of good corporate governance and the interests of strict process," Funke Kupper told Fairfax Media.
"My name has not been mentioned. I have not been told I am being investigated. My job is to take control of the situation."
Funke Kupper last week told reporters he could not recall such a payment during his four years in charge at Tabcorp, which said it did not pursue the opportunity in Cambodia.
ASX chairman Rick Holliday-Smith said the board "accepted that Elmer wanted to direct his full focus to the investigations which may be made into the Tabcorp matter -- and not have them interfere with the important role of leading the ASX".
He will take over Funke Kupper's duties while a replacement is found, the Australian Securities Exchange said in a statement.
Funke Kupper had remained a director at Tabcorp and he was granted leave of absence from the board, said the Australian gambling and entertainment giant.