Incoming Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) chief executive Ian Narev has vowed to continue the bank’s aggressive customer-focus overhaul after he takes the reins in December.


Despite Mr Narav’s limited experience in the banking sector, the Commonwealth Bank saw fit to place him in the top job, beating Ross McEwan, the chief of CBA’s retail banking arm.


Mr Narav has run the CBA’s small-business and private banking unit since 2007, in which he maintained the section’s $800 million annual profit margins.


"There will be some different style and focus to Ralph - but there will be a strong continuity with the strategy," Mr Narev said.


Confidence in CBA’s decision to appoint Mr Narev was made apparent after the company closed 78c higher on the ASX, finishing the day’s trading at $50.52.


CBA chairman David Turner described Mr Narav as an “extraordinary executive” who possesses a range of skills that will see the bank deal with regulatory, economic and competition challenges.