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The Westpac group celebrated its 200 years in business.
Celebrations were held at the bank’s branches and offices, including the Papua New Guinea operation.
Westpac PNG managing director Adrian Hughes said not many people get to celebrate working for a company that had been in business for 50 or even 100 years.
“In fact, the average life of a company these days is only 13. So 200 is a very special thing to be part of,” Hughes said.
Formerly called the Bank of New South Wales, Westpac was the first company in Australia and its first bank.
It was set up in 1817 to support the establishment of a formal currency and economy in the penal colony of Australia.
Papua New Guinea was one of the company’s first offshore outposts, establishing the country’s first bank to support trade routes and the growing economy.
Westpac branches and offices in Papua New Guinea joined the 38,000 Westpac group staff across the world in the event. They gathered at 10am – the time the Bank of New South Wales opened its door for the first time.
“Today (Friday) is much about honouring history. And of course history is about people – the staff and customers who allowed and helped Westpac to grow over the last two centuries,” Hughes said.
“I truly believe that Westpac has survived and thrived because it has been guided by the same purpose over its first 200 years – to provide stability, to support customers and communities, and to help grow the economy – and it’s these things we hold tight as we head into our third century of business.
“We are so proud of our history in PNG, which was one of Westpac’s first offshore outposts.
“Like in Australia, we were set up to help the establishment of a formal currency and economy for PNG.
“And 200 years later, we boast 500 of the most talented and dedicated staff in the country and Westpac has become part of the PNG DNA, with our brand proudly displayed across the country – from towns and villages in the North, South, East and West.
SOURCE: THE NATIONAL/PACNEWS
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