Strong performance reflected in Bank of Queensland half-year profit figures.

Bank of Queensland has established a firm foundation for the launch of its e-commerce and electronic business strategy that has been three years in the making.

Net profit was up 15.1% for the period up to December 1999 driven largely by new lending growth of 37.3% to $1 billion and growth in fees and other non-interest income of 52.4% to $25.2 million. Particularly impressive was the ability to maintain control over net interest margins and operating costs.

The latter point augurs well for the bank as it heads towards realisation of a joint venture agreement which will allow development and implementation of new technologies for automatic teller machines owned solely by itself and also the joint venture parties. BOQ views its communications technology as a competitive advantage and further roll out of initiatives were alluded to by Chief Executive, Mr John Dawson, who expects a similar financial performance by the bank for the remainder the financial year.

Bank of Queensland implemented a number of customer friendly service initiatives last year including “fee free” banking where on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays customers can make over the counter transactions “fee free”. Based on customers doing their pre or post week-end banking on the busiest days within the branch ie Monday’s and Friday’s, the initiative was designed to encourage them to complete their business on the other “quiet” days.