Bank of Queensland is continuing its vigorous national expansion with its first Tasmanian branch opened for business today in Launceston.
The Bank’s aggressive growth strategy has seen it open 76 customer-focused branches outside its home state of Queensland in two-and-a-half years and become Australia’s fastest growing bank.*
The new points of contact are all Owner-Managed Branches, a franchise-style arrangement which enables experienced bankers to own and manage their own full-service branch in their local community backed by the security and products of a 130-year-old financial institution.
Bank of Queensland, which already operates 53 ATMs across Tasmania out of its 2,000-strong Australia-wide fleet, plans to open branches in other major centres and is sourcing top-shelf bankers to make these branches a reality.
In Launceston, local Tony Barnard will use his 24 years’ experience in banking, business and customer service to bring Bank of Queensland’s acclaimed person2person service to Tasmania for the first time.
Mr Barnard said he was excited to be the state’s first privately-owned bank branch, and believed he would be welcomed because of Tasmanians’ growing dissatisfaction with the major banks
“Many Tasmanians are unhappy with long queues and poor and impersonal treatment they receive from their banks and we decided to do something about it,” he said.
“The beauty of Bank of Queensland’s Owner-Managed Branch model is that it puts the owner of the branch behind the counter where we can serve our customers ourselves.
“It’s all about knowing our customers and knowing the community.
“Like any small business, we rely on keeping our customers happy for our business to be successful, so we will make absolutely sure this happens.
“We will be available for our customers whenever they need us, even after hours, and won’t force them to use an automated call centre when they need assistance.
“We are even planning to open the branch on Saturday mornings – from 9.00am to 2.00pm – when we know our customers need to do their banking,” Mr Barnard said.
Bank of Queensland Launceston will be centrally located at 71 George Street in Launceston CBD.
The branch will immediately create four local jobs.
*Bank of Queensland has opened a new branch on average every 11 days over the past 12 months.