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Westpac sweeps Asian Banker Excellence in Retail Financial Services Awards


20 March 2015

  • Best Retail Bank in Australia
  • Best Retail Bank in Asia Pacific 
  • Best Wealth Management Business
  • Best Customer Relationship Management
  • Gai McGrath, General Manager Westpac Retail Banking, named Retail Banker of the Year for 2015.

Westpac's focus on helping its customers and providing them with the best support and advice across a whole range of their financial needs has contributed to it being named Best Retail Bank in Australia and Asia-Pacific, Best Wealth Management Business and Best Customer Relationship Management by Asian Banker Excellence in Retail Financial Services Awards.

The bank's drive to improve the experience for customers through new digital and face-to-face services such as its state of the art Bank Now Branches and Connect Now video-conferencing facilities has also seen Gai McGrath, Westpac's General Manager of Westpac Retail Banking, named as the Retail Banker of the Year.

Westpac was revealed the winner last night of the top five honours at the annual Asian Banker Excellence in Retail Financial Services Awards in Singapore which was attended by senior retail bankers from award winning banks in countries across the Asia Pacific, the Gulf and Central Asian regions.

Westpac was recognised for its innovation agenda delivering outstanding customer experiences including:  

  • Intuitive, easy to use digital banking through the launch of its new multi-award-winning digital platform 'Westpac Live', which has been rolled out to over 3 million customers since launch.
  • Access to money anytime, anywhere, and in emergencies through innovation in contactless payments, cardless ATM withdrawals through Emergency Cash & Get Cash services. Customers have access to over 50,000 fee-free ATMs as part of the banks Global Alliance network. To date Westpac has helped customers access their money without a card more than 90,000 times at a value of more than $18m.
  • Exceptional branch banking experiences delivered through acceleration of the rollout of
    Westpac's new 'Bank Now' branches and 24/7 lobbies which harness digital technology to make transactions easier, enable bankers to spend more time with customers on their complex financial needs, and empower customers to bank 24/7.
  • Launch of Connect Now - a video conferencing service that provides customers instant access to a dedicated team of banking specialists to deliver real-time conversations and solutions to address the important needs of our customers in one appointment.
  • Simplified products and processes, including introducing a 3 minute process for customers to open an operational transactional account; and the introduction of the 60 Minute Home Loan.
  • An award winning Best Banker program delivering over 2,000 bankers who are the best, most qualified in the marketplace.

Jason Yetton, Group Executive of Westpac Retail and Business Bank said: "I'm delighted but also humbled by the recognition from Asian Banker of what we achieved over the past few years in improving the service to our customers and helping them to prosper and grow. The awards are a tribute to the effort of our 10,000 wonderful people in Westpac Retail and Business Banking who work tirelessly to help our customers. This success is recognition of all their hard work. But we won't be resting on our laurels as we know how competitive our industry is which is reflected in the competition for these illustrious awards.

"I'm also delighted that Gai was recognised as the Retail Banker of the Year. This is an outstanding achievement for Gai who has been instrumental in delivering an improved customer experience including our 24/7 Bank Now and Connect Now video-conference enabled branches which is the biggest transformation to our retail banking network in a generation."

"We now have 80 Bank Now branches and are on track to have 30% of our retail branch network transformed by 2017.  The awards recognise our determination to be recognised as Australia's best retail, business and wealth bank by 2017 when we celebrate our 200 year birthday as Australia's first company and bank."

Ms McGrath said: "The awards represent the incredible hard work and dedication that is undertaken in every branch across Australia by our bankers who are committed to providing a service that goes beyond the expectation of our customers. Our front line bankers are the face of Westpac in hundreds of communities across Australia and I am extremely proud of their commitment to helping our customers. This award is as much for them as it is for me."

Ms McGrath started her career as a lawyer and spent several years in private practice before moving into senior corporate legal roles in the financial services industry in 1996. After 9 years with Westpac Group in senior leadership roles for BT Financial Group and Westpac New Zealand, Gai was named Westpac's General Manager, Retail Banking in October 2012. 

The awards programme, administered by The Asian Banker and refereed by prominent global bankers, consultants and academics, is the most prestigious of its kind. A stringent three-month evaluation process was undertaken based on a balanced and transparent scorecard used to determine the winners and the positions of various retail banks in the region.

About Asian Banker
The Asian Banker is the region's most authoritative provider of strategic business intelligence to the financial services community. The Singapore-based company has offices in Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Beijing and Dubai as well as representatives in London, New York and San Francisco. It has a business model that revolves around three core business lines: publications, research services and forums. The company's website is