Senior executives from Australia’s regional and international banks have committed to providing Australia’s brokers with a stronger service proposition over the course of 2012.
At a leadership luncheon hosted by The Adviser in Sydney yesterday, representatives from Citibank, AMP, Bankwest, Macquarie, Suncorp Bank, ING DIRECT, and Adelaide and Bendigo Bank were unanimous that a service based offering was the key to regaining market share lost in recent years to the majors.
Bendigo and Adelaide Bank’s general manager third party mortgages Damien Percy described the events of the last four or five years as “a massive free kick” for the majors, with the government and the media driving consumers to the perceived safety of the majors.
Mr Percy said Australia’s smaller players had the nous and the ability to match and in some instances beat the majors on price and policy.
Over the coming year, all representatives agreed that they would be looking to improve their broker service proposition in a bid to drive their share of the mortgage market.
“We have a lot of things to offer borrowers. Our service proposition will always beat the majors and we want to educate brokers on this fact,” he said.
And a significant decision made by those present at the luncheon was the most appropriate term to describe the lending sector.
Citibank’s head of mortgages Vibha Coburn said the term ‘second tier’ had “negative connotations”.
“When people hear the term ‘second tier’ they immediately think second place,” she said.
Bendigo and Adelaide Bank’s general manager third party mortgages Damien Percy said non-major was a far better term.
“Second tier sounds like we are small players, when in actuality; ING DIRECT and Citibank are both larger than CBA and Westpac because they have an incredibly strong international presence. Non-major is definitely the right term to use,” he said.