Bank of Queensland (BoQ) says it’s looking to expand its broker network - while simultaneously closing branches - in an effort to reach a broader range of customers.
In its most recent strategy update, BoQ group executive, retail banking, Matt Baxby, says the broker channel represents a ‘significant source of growth’ and that there are compelling reasons for the lender to enter the mortgage broker market.
“Brokers account for over 40% of new mortgage volumes [and are] particularly valued by more affluent consumers,” he says in the report.
Baxby says BoQ understands that brokers are keen to diversify flows and says the bank is looking to build its broker channel presence in Western Australia, New South Wales and Victoria.
“BDMs are now on the ground in each key market and natural share will build over time.”
He says broker acceptance has so far been positive in a pilot test, with more than 240 accredited in the first stage of the expansion.
However, while the news was largely positive for brokers keen to work with the non-major bank, it comes at a cost. According to the Sydney Morning Herald, BoQ's network of branches is delivering a lower market share than other lenders' branch networks and that, as a result, it's looking at other business models.
'We have about 4% distribution in terms of points of presence, delivering 2% market share…We have a third of the size of Westpac's network, delivering about a tenth of their market share. So I think overall … we are probably slightly overweight as we stand here today.''