ANZ and National banks consolidating into 'the strong brand' rather than paying for an extension on 'a damaged brand' - Hisco

ANZ and National banks consolidating into 'the strong brand' rather than paying for an extension on 'a damaged brand' - Hisco

By Gareth Vaughan

ANZ New Zealand's jettisoning of the popular National Bank black horse logo will see it do away with a "damaged brand" and consolidate into a "strong brand," CEO David Hisco says.

In a view that's perhaps not New Zealand centric, Hisco told interest.co.nz doing away with the National Bank brand, specifically the horse logo, would see the group amalgamate to the stronger of its two brands in New Zealand.

Having bought the National Bank from Britain's Lloyds TSB in 2003, ANZ in 2010 renewed its rights to use the Lloyds black horse on a green and white background as the National Bank logo until the end of 2014.  Any further renewal on use of the logo would've been subject to negotiation with Lloyds and would've seen ANZ continue paying an undisclosed amount for the rights. Last week ANZ announced it would phase the National Bank brand out over two years.

"The biggest thing from my point of view is customers want to bank with a strong bank and Lloyds got tangled up in the GFC (global financial crisis) and had to be bailed out by the British government," Hisco said.

"They had to put off staff and they shut a number of branches. You've got that brand or else you've got the ANZ brand, which is one of the strongest AA (credit) rated banks in the world. So do you pay for an extension on a damaged brand or do you make the move to consolidate into the one brand which is a strong brand?"

"Talking to our customers they get it and in fact move on pretty quickly," Hisco added.

Lloyds is now 41% owned by the British government and known as Lloyds Banking Group after Lloyds TSB  bought Halifax Bank of Scotland (HBOS) at the height of the GFC after then British Prime Minister Gordon Brown told Lloyds TSB's chairman Victor Blank it would be helpful if Lloyds could end the uncertainty surrounding the troubled HBOS by buying it. The British taxpayer has sunk £20.3 billion (about NZ$40 billion) into Lloyds.

In consumer customer satisfaction surveys National Bank has consistently scored higher than ANZ, including in Roy Morgan Research's August survey. And the ANZ group has decided to shift ANZ to National Bank's core banking system, rather than vice versa.

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6 Comments

That horse.
 A loss.  Best image and music on telly adds since forever.  Mind you that's not saying much. 

Makes sense..ANZ is a better representation of the combined bank than the horse, tied to a British past....But Kiwis will take time to understand this.

Just waiting for the inevitable ANZ losses on Asian investments ...

It was broken, what was broken?, most people would not see any link between the bank and it's UK parent, they just see it as another foreign bank. 

I'm a National bank customer. Have been for years with both personal & business accounts. Always found them very good.
My account Manager used to be in Newmarket (Auckland), but after they started the back office centralisation with ANZ, his department was moved to Albany, so they now expect we to drive across town if I want a face to face.
Up until 2 years ago I also had a business that banked with Westpac, so I was running business accounts with Westpac & National at the same time. I can say that I found the Westpac online banking system 100% superior to National.
Over the last few years I have become increasingly aware (thanks BH) of just how much money overseas banks are pulling out of NZ, so I have decided that I will start to move my accounts over to TSB. They only have 3 branches in Auckalnd, but I can not remember the last time I was in a National Bank branch.
I expect it to be a pain, and if the National bank was not going to disapear I would probably not do it.
 

TSB, yes.  Otherwise, foreign banks need your money to bail themselves out of failed investments. 

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