Heritage Bank has grown to today become one of Australia’s largest customer-owned banks, with branches in Queensland and New South Wales, and a national network of mortgage broker partners.
Our origins can be traced back to 1875, when the Toowoomba Permanent Building Society was established. That was followed in 1897 by the formation of the Darling Downs Building Society. The two organisations co-existed side-by-side in Toowoomba until 1981, when they merged to become Heritage Building Society.
In 1983, we established our Head Office in the newly constructed Heritage Plaza complex on Ruthven Street, the first high-rise office facility to be built in the Toowoomba CBD. By 1995, our total consolidated assets passed the $1 billion mark. By 2005, we had reached the $5 billion milestone.
In 2011, we changed our name to Heritage Bank, though our customer-owned structure remained the same. Our ongoing dedication to our members saw us take out the 2014 Canstar Blue Challenger Bank Award for Most Satisfied Customers, the 2016 and 2017 JD Power Australian Retail Banking Satisfaction Study and the 2018 Roy Morgan Customer Satisfaction Awards Bank of the Year.
In 2018, we established the Heritage Bank Charitable Foundation with seed funding of $2 million, and in 2019, passed the $10 billion mark in assets and opened two new branches at Castle Hill and Parramatta in Sydney.
The COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 ushered in a new way of working. Many of our staff shifting to hybrid working arrangements and fast technological adoption within the bank, however our investment in brick and mortar facilities did not stop. In 2021, we bolstered our Brisbane CBD presence by consolidating our Brisbane offices to a prime riverfront location on Eagle St, and we opened two new branches in NSW - Macquarie Park and Tweed Heads.
We were voted Money Magazine's Customer-Owned Money Minder of the Year 2021 and received two Mozo People's Choice Awards in 2022 for Excellent Customer Service and Highly Trusted financial institution.
In March 2023, Heritage Bank entered a new phase in our history, by merging with People’s Choice Credit Union to create Australia’s leading member-owned banking organisation. With approximately 720,000 members, 1,900 employees, 95 branch and service locations across Australia, and more than $23 billion in total assets. As a merged organisation, we remain absolutely committed to the interests of our members and to contributing to the communities we serve.
We have successfully merged and we are now commencing an exciting journey to bring together our people, processes and technology under a single new brand.
People First Bank will be our new brand that says exactly what we’re all about: people.
We’re taking a phased approach to introducing all aspects of the new brand which we intend to roll out across branches, products, digital channels, sponsorships and the community over time.
While our name and brand will change, our commitment to our people and local communities as well as our dedication to serving our members stays the same.