A Townsville branch will go down in history as the first Bank of Queensland branch to be converted from a corporate branch to a franchised, owner-managed bank branch.
Managing Director David Liddy said the three owner-managers who were taking on the Aitkenvale branch brought a wealth of experience and drive to the branch.
“This really is a case of our new owner-managers liking the company so much, they bought a branch,” Mr Liddy said.
Aitkenvale Owner-Managers Tony Castrejana, Declan Carnes and David Leonardi are already very familiar with Bank of Queensland.
Both Declan and David already own their own Bank of Queensland branches in North Ward and Castletown and Tony has been managing the BOQ branch in Kirwan for the past couple of years.
“These three owner-managers have impeccable credentials for owning and operating our Aitkenvale branch,” Mr Liddy said.
Mr Liddy said the Owner-Managed Branch (OMB) model had revolutionised Australian banking and helped BOQ spearhead a rapid expansion both here in Queensland, and interstate.
“Bank of Queensland now has 160 branches, of which 103 are owner-managed branches,” he said.
“These OMBs compliment our corporate branch network in Queensland to ensure we cover the State and give everyone the chance to experience BOQ’s commitment to service. We now have 138 branches in Queensland, including five in Townsville, and we haven’t stopped yet.”
Tony Castrejana, who has been in the banking and financial industry for more than two decades, said he was excited to be given the opportunity to purchase his own branch.
“Being an owner manager myself means I will become a small business owner just like so many of my customers,” he said.
“Unlike the other banks, we are empowered to make decisions based on our local knowledge and experience. We are really a part of the local community.
“We want to provide an attractive banking alternative based on Bank of Queensland’s strong customer orientation. Like any small owner-operated business, our livelihood depends on ensuring our customers are happy and we will go out of our way to make this happen,” Mr Castrejana said.
Mr Liddy said Bank of Queensland would consider converting further corporate branches to OMBs strategically on a case-by-case basis in the future.