One of McPhee’s claims to fame is that he was a member of Australia’s Under 19 cricket squad which boasted the Waugh brothers, Mark Taylor and Craig McDermott. He says that one of the fallouts from the GFC is that there is a clear lack of competition in banking today, which presents ME with a new window of opportunity. “The customer wants a genuine alternative to the majors. This was traditionally provided by the regional banks. There used to be 15 or 16 of them. ME has the opportunity to be a proper alternative by providing good banking services for working Australians.”
There are currently seven banks only which have a branch network – the four majors (counting St George and Westpac as one), plus Bendigo and Adelaide, Suncorp and Bank of Queensland. The two ways to distribute for other providers is via a good online offering, such as ING’s, or through the community banking approach. “We have to have best-inclass delivery,” McPhee says.