What began as a credit union to service Mount Isa Mines employees fifty years ago has grown into a financial institution with a state wide footprint of 28 branches, soon to be 29, and over 400 employees, but still retains its home grown ethos of serving its Members in regional communities with its head office located in Townsville.
Queensland Country Group Chief Executive Officer Aaron Newman says it is a meaningful milestone for the organisation and a chance to reflect on their values and achievements while planning ahead for the future.
“It is no small feat for a financial institution to not only last fifty years, but to be in the strongest position it ever has been,” says Mr Newman.
“This achievement is testament to the leadership the organisation has had from its Board and senior managers and the ongoing support from our growing Member communities over our 50 years.”
Queensland Country Bank has undergone significant changes over the years, most notably mergers with the Electrical Credit Union in 2017 and Queenslanders Credit Union in 2018, and their transition to a member-owned bank in 2020 which has opened up more opportunities for locals throughout the region.
“Through our own strategic efforts and mutually beneficial merger acquisitions, the credit union enjoyed significant growth, and in February last year transitioned to a member-owned bank.
“This transition has enabled us to increase our service offering and attract new Members, which has seen us achieve record lending growth despite challenging economic conditions.”
The organisation made headlines when it acquired the naming rights sponsorship for the Queensland Country Bank Stadium, and is well known for supporting the local community.
“We have a long history of supporting local communities through grants to the value of over $2.4 million, and made significant donations after natural disasters to assist with community recovery.
“Our organisation provides rewarding career opportunities for regional Queenslanders, with an emphasis on training and promoting within, and staff actively participate in our community volunteer program which allows up to two paid days volunteer leave annually.”
Mr Newman says that while Queensland Country is in an enviable position with a bright future, the Board and executive team will not be resting on their laurels.
“In recent years we’ve proven our strength and resilience as we’ve weathered natural disasters and a global pandemic,” he says.
“We have to keep getting better all the time, adapting to changing conditions and making strategic decisions that position the organisation well.
“As a people-focussed organisation, our staff, Members and communities are at the forefront of every decision we make. They are the reason we are still standing strong today and why we’ll continue to grow over the next 50 years.”
Image credit: Roslyn Budd from Budd Photography