Big banks launch a $1bn makeover

By David Tuckwell on Sunday 5 February 2017

Opinion

 

Australia’s biggest banks have launched an industry makeover in an attempt to sanitise their image among a disillusioned public. 

Called “Better Banking”, the campaign has said it will pour A$1bn into addressing customer concerns and run an advertising blitz to convey the message.

“We know people want to see improvements in Australian banking. That’s why we’re making changes for the better. From better products and services, to having the right culture in banks, our goal is to earn your confidence again,” the website reads.

The campaign, overseen by the industry lobby the Australian Bankers Association, also postures as a listening exercise. Its website asks visitors to “tell us what you think”, “We’d like to know how you think we could make Australian banking better,” and provides a form for doing so.

The banks have ridden a wave of scandals and received a mounting pile of negative press the last twelve months. The negative publicity has translated into political pressure and the centre-left Australian Labor Party is now pushing for a Royal Commission into the banks.

The campaign, the banks hope, will help unwind some of the political pressure.

“If we are fixing the problems they believe are the reasons for a royal commission, that’s a good thing isn’t it?” Steven Münchenberg, CEO of the ABA told The Daily Telegraph. “You get the fixes without a royal commission.”

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