Bank of Queensland announces first five interstate branches

Bank of Queensland today announced the first five of its planned 100-branch interstate expansion in New South Wales and Victoria.


The branches will be open for business on schedule before the end of August this year, and represent the Banks first foray into Sydney and Melbourne, along with regional New South Wales.


Bank of Queensland Managing Director David Liddy said the bank had been overwhelmed by both the quantity of bankers wanting to be a part of Bank of Queenslands interstate expansion, and the quality of those bankers.


We have received many approaches from bankers wishing to partner Bank of Queensland in owner-managed branches in New South Wales and Victoria, Mr Liddy said.


We have been able to choose the very best of those bankers to become partners with Bank of Queensland under our unique owner-managed branch model, he said.


The first five branches to be announced will be in Byron Bay, Kingscliff and North Parramatta in New South Wales, and Frankston and Bourke Street in the Melbourne CBD in Victoria. The first, Byron Bay, opens next Monday, July 26.


The Bank has many more owner-managers in the pipeline and is searching for appropriate sites. Further sites will be announced throughout New South Wales and Victoria as they are confirmed.


Bank of Queensland is making a major move with its extraordinarily successful, service-orientated model into New South Wales and Victoria, Mr Liddy said.


We are well on track to meet our target of 100 new branches in New South Wales and Victoria by August 2006. This follows the Banks opening of 42 new owner-managed branches in Queensland over the last two years.


Bank of Queenslands Owner-Managed Branches (OMB ®) are run by exceptional bank managers who have experience in retail, private, personal or business banking. The Bank has 77 OMBs out of its total Queensland network of 135.


Bank of Queenslands success has shown that Australians want personal, face-to-face contact when it comes to dealing with their bank. Our OMB ®s mean that Bank customers also have continuity as the manager is the branch owner, and are a small business person within their community, Mr Liddy said.


Bank of Queensland will support its interstate branch roll-out with a dedicated ATM network of more than 1000 BOQ branded ATMs already in place in NSW and Victoria, and its BOQ Equipment Finance offices in Sydney and Melbourne. Business bankers and dedicated Business Banking Centres will support the branch roll-out to provide BOQ face-to-face business banking services and products as well.


Mr Liddy said the keen interest from bankers and business people indicated their confidence in the OMB ® models potential in these states.


As our ongoing success in Queensland continues to prove, Australians are looking for an alternative bank which offers genuine, friendly person2person™ service, Mr Liddy said.


Independent market research has indicated Bank of Queensland and its truly differentiated level of service will be well accepted by customers in the southern markets, Mr Liddy said.


I expect the strong initial interest from bankers wanting to invest in an OMB ® to snowball as our first wave of branches begin to open in the city, suburbs and regional towns.


The Bank empowers the owner-manager, allowing them to interact more fully with the communities they serve.


While the Bank tightly controls brand, credit policy and service procedures, owner-managers are incentivised to build their own business and manage their local market.


They can make local decisions based on their local knowledge and maximise the advantages of their local contacts.


OMB ®s offer preferential service because customers are more than customers of Bank of Queensland - they are personal customers of the owner-manager and of their staff and each of them impacts on the revenue for that branch, Mr Liddy said.