Heritage Bank - the largest customer-owned bank in Australia - is coming to Bundaberg's CBD.
Queensland-based Heritage will open its first branch in Bundaberg in the old Buss & Turner building at 115 Bourbong Street by early July. Alterations and fit-out of the building are about to start.
Heritage has appointed Mrs Leanne Hermann as Manager and the branch will employ another four staff members when it opens.
CEO Mr John Minz said opening a full-service branch in Bundaberg was a key step in expanding the footprint of Heritage, which represents a new-style bank in Australia. Heritage Bank changed its name from Heritage Building Society late last year, and is now Australia's largest customer-owned bank with $8 billion in total assets.
"As a customer-owned bank, our approach is very different to the big four banks," Mr Minz said.
"We call it our People first philosophy. We're all about providing our customers with the best value we can, not about making huge profits. That's why we have had the highest customer satisfaction rating of any bank in Australia.
"It means we aim to give our customers better interest rates, fairer fees and superior service wherever we can. We listen to you, we're friendly and we care.
"The profits we make stay with us, instead of being paid out to external shareholders as they do at the big banks, and our priority is on serving the best interests of our customers."
Heritage can trace its origins back 137 years, so has a long history of success in meeting the financial needs of its customers. Heritage currently has 59 branches and 65 mini-branches across southern Queensland, and offers customers access to a network of 2,900 ATMs around Australia.
The Bundaberg outlet will be Heritage's most northerly branch, with the next closest at Hervey Bay.
Mr Minz said Heritage would bring a fresh alternative to Bundaberg for both personal and business banking.
"Our move into Bundaberg is an exciting expansion for Heritage and we are looking forward to bringing the residents of the region our competitive and community-focussed banking alternative," Mr Minz said.
"We offer a complete range of products and services, including savings accounts, transaction accounts, home loans, term deposits, credit and debit cards, personal loans, insurance, financial planning, foreign exchange and business banking.
"We have had a mini-branch outlet at the Bundaberg Central Newsagency for some time, as well as at the Beachside Moore Park Real Estate office in Moore Park, so we already have a base of customers in the region.
"The demand from existing customers, as well as prospective customers, was a factor in us deciding to open the new branch."
The Bundaberg Central Newsagency mini-branch will close when the new branch opens.
However the Moore Park Beachside Real Estate mini-branch will remain. In fact, the mini-branch will relocate to the real estate office's outlet in the new IGA-anchored shopping centre at Moore Park that has its grand opening this month.
* Based on a $150,000 loan over 25 years. WARNING: This comparison rate is true only for the examples given and may not include all fees and charges. Different terms, fees or other loan amounts might result in a different comparison rate.