NAB wins '2010 Socially Responsible Bank of the Year' Award in Money

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Money Magazine has awarded NAB the '2010 Socially Responsible Bank of the Year' in the 2010 Consumer Finance Awards.

Chair of the award judging panel, Ms Mara Bun, CEO of Green Cross said, "NAB has led vital discussion around social and environmental responsibility in the last year, and backed it with action. We reward NAB for using its muscle to benefit consumers, for real environmental leadership, and for supporting vulnerable Australians through a world-class micro-lending program."

"NAB stood out for its pioneering leadership and sustained effort. Its microfinance program has helped thousands of disadvantaged people build local enterprises and afford essential household goods and services during a time when credit was very tough to find," she added.

NAB General Manager, Corporate Responsibility and Brand, Tim O'Leary said, "We are honoured to be recognised with this Award because it shows last year's decision to improve relationships with customers and the community is starting to resonate.

"Our 'fair value' agenda has led the way in abolishing fees on our most popular business and personal banking accounts such overdrawn account, over-limit, account service, and transaction fees and reducing late payment fees dramatically. In wealth management our transition to a more transparent fee-based advice model, rather than commissions, leads the industry. We've also had the lowest major bank variable home loan interest rate for the last year."

"Responsible, fair and affordable banking is now more accessible to people on low incomes through our industry-leading low-interest and no-interest microfinance products that has seen us commit $130 million in capital since 2003. These products make a real difference to people who need them."

"While times got tough recently, we increased our financial support of community initiatives by 73 per cent with our 350 community partners, including awarding 88 outstanding community partnerships through 'Schools First'. We also increased employee volunteering time by 42 per cent," he added.

"It comes down to taking our responsibility seriously with customers, investors, markets, regulators, and governments," Mr O'Leary said. "The best way we can show that is through our tangible customer, social and environmental programs which bring to life our 'more give, less take' commitment".

This award from Money magazine comes after other major recent wins from CANSTAR CANNEX who announced NAB the winner of many awards in its Innovation Excellence Awards including the first-ever 'Banking Leadership' Award, and the 'Best Business Bank' award from CFO magazine.

Notes to editors

Main reasons for NAB being awarded the '2010 Socially Responsible Institution of the Year' by Money magazine:

  • Led the industry with its 'Fair Value' agenda which resulted in nearly $1 Billion being kept by customers through abolition of several business and personal banking fees, NAB moving in line with recent RBA rate rises, and improving systems to provide clearer advice to customers;
  • Increasing community investment to $58 million through programs with about 350 community partners despite the challenging economic environment - a 73 per cent increase on 2008, equating to 1.05 per cent of cash earnings before tax;
  • Increasing community investment to $58 million despite the challenging economic environment - a 73 per cent increase on 2008, equating to 1.05 per cent of cash earnings before tax;
  • Awarding $5 million in school-community partnerships to 88 schools through the innovative "Schools First" program which received 1,552 applications, 15 per cent of schools nationally;
  • Heading towards carbon neutrality by September 2010 with the opening of a 2MW capacity tri-generation plant in February, with estimated greenhouse gas emissions saving of 20,000 tonnes eCO2 per annum (10 per cent of our carbon footprint);
  • Increasing industry-leading microfinance programs to 3490 no-interest and low-interest loans to the value of $5.8 million;
  • Launching the second Reconciliation Action Plan which now has 63 school-based trainees, 17 fulltime trainees and four graduate positions in our indigenous employment program;
  • Receiving recognition as an Employer of Choice by the Equal Opportunity for Women Association, the only Australian big-four bank to receive this;
  • Increasing employee volunteering across NAB Group to 12,487 days for the 2009 financial year, up 42 per cent on 2008; and
  • Becoming the largest accredited Fair Trade workplace in Australia and New Zealand through its Supplier Sustainability Program.
  • NAB leadership in corporate means being held accountable for ethical behaviour through tangible programs. It delivers advice, information, skills and resources across all dealings with customers, staff and suppliers, community and environment. NAB takes this leadership role seriously as it believes all corporations need to provide solutions to social and environmental issues in the communities in which they operate.

Media - For further information contact:

Tristan Everett Corporate Responsibility Communications National Australia Bank T: 03 8634 8668 M: 0457 537 948

Meaghan Telford Corporate Affairs National Australia Bank T: 03 8634 4822 M: 0457 551 211