The Sunshine Coast hinterland town of Beerwah celebrated the official opening of its newest Bank - Bank of Queensland - at a community event today.
Local MP Mal Brough, Member for Longman and Minister for Employment Services, joined the Bank's General Manager Retail Donna Brown and Beerwah branch owner-manager Jeff Willis to officially open Bank of Queensland's newest branch.
Mr Brough congratulated the Bank of Queensland on supporting the local community.
"It is great to have locally owned and operated businesses such as the Bank of Queensland showing confidence in our local area," Mr Brough said.
"At a time when many banks are closing and centralising their branches, the Bank of Queensland is offering residents the opportunity to access a local banking service which will undoubtedly have a positive effect on the business economy in the Beerwah area."
The Beerwah branch builds on Bank of Queensland's ongoing commitment to the Sunshine Coast, which has seen it open four branches - two in the Coast's rapidly developing hinterland - and a Business Banking Centre in the past seven months.
The opening of the Beerwah branch will increase the Bank's network in the Sunshine Coast to 13 branches - a welcome relief to burgeoning communities in the State's growth corridor.
The Bank's Managing Director David Liddy said all four new branches were constituted under the Bank's successful Owner-Manager concept, in which experienced local businesspeople both owned and ran the branch.
"This innovative, local approach ensures the Bank maintains a strong connection with and loyalty to our customers at a local level," Mr Liddy said.
"It also enables us to continue providing the top-quality, personal, face-to-face service for which our branches are justifiably renowned."
By August 2004, the Bank will have opened at least 38 new branches throughout Queensland in just over two years - a significant investment in the State.
Owner-Manager of Bank of Queensland Beerwah, Jeff Willis, said the branch had already received overwhelming community support and plenty of new business.
"In just our first week of trade we have written nearly two million dollars of new loans and opened many new accounts, proving that people are willing to support small local businesses which support them," Mr Willis said.