What has been announced
- We’re exploring this opportunity because we believe it is a unique opportunity to merge as two equals to create an organisation that will deliver more for our members.
No other merger partner offers the level of cultural and strategic alignment that Heritage Bank does.
The organisations have complementary capabilities and geographic footprints and we’re both strong values-driven organisations that are committed to mutuality, our members and employees, as well as maintaining a strong presence in our local communities.
The Boards of People’s Choice and Heritage Bank believe that exploring a merger would be in the interests of members. By bringing our two organisations together, we would have the size and scale to deliver more for our members through enhanced products, services, digital capabilities and competitive pricing.
At this early stage we believe the complementary capability of the two entities would provide members with access to a broader, more diversified distribution network across branches and brokers as well as greater access to additional products and payment capabilities.
- The proposed merger has a strong strategic rationale given the complementary capabilities and geographic footprint of both organisations and the potential for a significant increase in scale, unlocking a broader range of products and services and improved access to enhanced digital capabilities for both People’s Choice and Heritage Bank members.
The expanded geographic footprint across SA, NT, VIC, QLD and NSW would provide new growth opportunities for the merged entity.
- Heritage Bank is one of Australia’s largest and most successful customer-owned banks.
Heritage Bank has a proud track record of serving the interests of its members, with a history stretching back 146 years to its origins in the Queensland city of Toowoomba.
Today, Heritage Bank has evolved into a national force in banking, with $11.9 billion in assets, 320,000 members, 800 employees, 60 branches and mini-branches across Queensland and in Sydney, and a national network of broker partners, serving the nation from its Toowoomba headquarters.
Heritage Bank takes great pride in living its “people first” philosophy as a cornerstone of its culture and is deeply committed to supporting the communities in which it operates.
Heritage Bank regularly ranks among the top Australian financial institutions when it comes to meeting the needs of members, with levels of customer satisfaction, trust and advocacy that are among the leaders of the financial services sector.
- Yes. Being a mutual is fundamental to who we are. This merger is being driven by our commitment to mutuality and retaining a committed member focus. If the merger proceeds, it would create one of Australia’s largest customer-owned banking organisations.
- No. People’s Choice is not taking over Heritage Bank, nor is Heritage Bank taking over People’s Choice. It will be a true merger of equals. This is reflected in the fact that dual head offices will be retained in Adelaide and Toowoomba and that the new merged organisation will comprise an equal number of directors from Heritage and People’s Choice.
- The decision regarding the Chair and CEO of the merged organisation will be made over the coming months and following the due diligence process. It is intended that these proposed appointments will be advised to employees and members well before the member vote on the merger in the first half of 2022.
- It is early days, and both organisations are focused on ensuring a merger would be in members’ best interests. If a merger were to proceed, we envisage that there would be an initial period where both brands are maintained but that ultimately a single brand would be created that reflects the deep roots and values of both People’s Choice and Heritage Bank.
- A due diligence process is now underway. Should both Boards agree to proceed, the proposed merger will be put to both groups of members for approval in the first half of 2022.
Further detail with regards to the timing and process will be provided to members by email and traditional mail in due course.
We will provide regular updates via our branches, social media channels, and website.
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