Auswide Bank has always had a history of challenging the status quo in order to secure a better deal for the typical Australian. It was 1966, and Ron Hancock, a local of the Wide Bay Burnett area, decided to form the Burnett Permanent Building Society to provide an alternative to the big banks. In 1979, the organisation merged with the Wide Bay Capricorn Building Society and continued to grow until 2013, when the decision was made to convert the company from a building society to a bank.
It was at this time that Martin Barrett was appointed CEO of the new Auswide Bank. It was a big challenge, as the company had only one CEO previously in its 50-year history. But Martin was up to the task. "I started in February 2013," he says. "I replaced Ron Hancock, who was actually the founder of the Burnett Permanent Building Society. Ron had been in the role for some 45 or so years. So Im only the second CEO or MD of the organisation in its 50-year history."