Bank of Queensland today cemented its strong commitment to the Gold Coast with the opening of its first dedicated stand-alone Business Banking Centre outside Brisbane.
The new Centre, situated in the commercial hub of Bundall, is expected to attract legions of disgruntled business customers who feel they have been abandoned by the big banks.
Last week, a survey by Macquarie Research Equities found that 70 per cent of small to medium business owners did not like their banks, the main complaint being a lack of regular contact with their bank manager.
The Centre builds on the opening of two new BOQ branches in the fast-growing areas of West Burleigh and Harbour Town last year, a significant expansion of its activities in the region and a major investment in local communities.
It brings to 14 the number of BOQ's face-to-face banking facilities on the Coast.
Managing Director David Liddy will join the Coasts' leading business and social figures to celebrate the opening of the keenly awaited facility tonight (Tuesday, March 25).
Mr Liddy said BOQ's continuing support for the Coast provided a stark contrast with the Big Banks, which have closed 34 branches throughout the region in the past five years.
"BOQ has recognised and responded to the need for better banking services throughout the fastest-growing city in Australia and is committed to restoring easily accessible face-to-face banking for residents and business owners.
"Our branch opening program will continue in earnest this year with the opening of a further 12 branches by August, including one at Oxenford in the Gold Coast hinterland.
"But the benefits go well beyond the provision of banking and financial services - the branches also create local jobs, rejuvenate communities and bolster economic progress.
"In particular, the opening of this dedicated Business Banking Centre reflects the Coast's significant and growing status as a major economic hub and is aimed at assisting the region's economic importance continue to develop," Mr Liddy said.
General Manager, Business Banking Ross Norton, told the gathered businesspeople that BOQ would exploit its key attributes of flexibility, integrity and personal service to attract and assist the hordes of business customers unhappy with their current bank's services.
"Everyone I speak to comments about the lack of service and minimal personal contact offered by the big banks.
"Their customers are often forced to call a central processing centre, usually in a different city or State, where they must deal with someone who has no understanding of their business or their banking history.
"Our focus is on providing a level of personal service and tailor-made business solutions many other banks have long since ceased to offer.
"We are nimble enough that our business customers can deal directly and personally with the decision-makers - the person who is administering their overdraft or approving their loan.
"Our locally based Business Banking Managers and Branch Managers are highly skilled in commerce, in touch with local business and in tune with each customer's specific needs.
"Face-to-face banking is absolutely critical for most businesses - simply having a bank nearby can save them hundreds of valuable hours every year in doing their banking and provide a personal contact point for many solutions to their business needs and concerns," Mr Norton said
The Business Banking Centre can be contacted on 5592 4688.