Bank of Queensland's first interstate branches - at Byron Bay in New South Wales and Frankston in Victoria - are now open for business with three more to open within weeks.
By the end of August, branches in Bourke Street in the Melbourne CBD, at North Parramatta in Sydney's west and in Kingscliff on the Tweed Coast will also open their doors.
These are the first five of 100 Owner-Managed Branches™ the Bank will open in New South Wales and Victoria by August 2006 Owner-Managed Branches™ are a unique concept where experienced bankers partner the Bank to provide communities with an unparalleled person2person™ banking experience.
Speaking at the official opening of the Bank of Queensland's very first interstate branch, at Byron Bay branch, Managing Director David Liddy said the Bank's unique Owner-Managed Branch™ concept would herald a new era in customer service in New South Wales and Victoria.
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.
The person who manages our branches also owns them. Like any small business, they depend on keeping their customers happy and will go out of their way to ensure this happens.
Here in Byron Bay, Owner-Manager Graeme Capel is already seeing a groundswell of local support in his first week of business as people begin to realise there really is a difference between Bank of Queensland and the other banks.
We have received approaches from many bankers wishing to partner Bank of Queensland in Owner-Managed Branches™ in the southern States. We have been able to choose the very best of those bankers.
Owner-Manager of Bank of Queensland Byron Bay, Graeme Capel, said he had been overwhelmed by the support shown by the local community.
Already we have many new customers who have migrated from the Big Banks in search of a better service alternative, Mr Capel said.
I grew up in the era of real bank managers and have styled my service on these principles.
I am a firm believer in the old-fashioned values of face-to-face service and going the extra mile for customers.
Here in Byron, with its strong sense of community, residents and business-owners appreciate being able to talk face-to-face with their bank manager as they used to.
Little things like opening on Saturdays, not having to refer all loans to Head Office for approval and having a permanent manager in the branch to talk to customers all translate into an unprecedented level of service for our customers.
Bank of Queensland is continuing negotiations with other potential New South Wales and Victoria owner-managers and will announce further sites throughout both States as they are confirmed.
Bank of Queensland will support its interstate branch rollout with a network of more than 1000 BOQ ATMs already in place in NSW and Victoria, and its BOQ Equipment Finance offices in Sydney and Melbourne.
Business Banking facilities will follow the branch rollout.