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Tasmanian Banking Services launches first branch

24 November 2000 |Media centre

Joint venture partners Tasmanian Trustees and Bendigo Bank today restored local ownership to the Tasmanian banking market with the launch of Tasmanian Banking Services' first branch, at Burnie.

Further launches will follow, at Rosny Park in Hobart next week and at Launceston, Hobart central and Devonport in the New Year.

"Today marks the beginning of a unique community-focused style of banking in Tasmania," Tasmanian Trustees chairman Barry Henry and Bendigo Bank chairman Richard Guy said in a joint statement.

"Tasmanian Banking Services creates a direct Tasmanian participation in the banking system.

"It is already generating local employment and growth, and, most importantly, will provide Tasmanians with the opportunity to bank with a customer-focused company which is committed to helping them achieve their financial goals.

"We have a deeply-held belief that only by creating success for the communities in which we operate can we be successful as well. We therefore undertake this new joint venture with the utmost commitment to add value for Tasmania."

The Burnie branch, on the corner of Cattley and Wilson streets, was officially opened by Sid Sidebottom MP and will begin trading from Monday. It will open from 9am to 5pm on weekdays and from 9am to noon on Saturdays.

Tasmanian Banking Services managing director Mark Scanlon, who is also chief executive of Tasmanian Trustees, said the new company would provide the full range of Bendigo Bank services. Customers therefore receive full bank security.

"Tasmanian Banking Services will bring a unique approach to customer service, including a commitment to face-to-face service and our approach to fees.

"Communities have clearly demonstrated they value face-to-face branch banking and Tasmanian Banking Services is committed to providing that choice.

"Our view is that it is up to customers to decide how they want to bank. We will therefore provide full branch service plus all the electronic options - including phone and internet - and leave it up to customers to choose. Our commitment is to have someone available to speak personally with customers whenever they need us.

"We believe fees should be fair and equitable to all customers. For that reason, bank accounts we provide will not charge account-keeping fees as Bendigo believes customers should not have to pay merely to have an account.

"All customers will receive a guaranteed number of free transactions, with a flat fee per transaction once that number is exceeded. In this way, customers can choose themselves whether they want to bank electronically or come into our branches and see our staff. We do not discriminate between different transaction types."

Mr Guy said Bendigo Bank aimed to increase services to Tasmanians, both through the joint venture company Tasmanian Banking Services and through helping communities seeking to open Community Bank branch of Bendigo Bank.

"Ultimately, we will deliver services to communities through a range of options including Tasmanian Banking Services branches, Community Banks and, where appropriate, agency structures."

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