According to ASB’s Twitter account, good banking isn’t about ownership (or apostrophes). It’s about love and devotion.
But MP and Kiwibank stalwart Jim Anderton tends to disagree and certainly doesn’t think ASB should be allowed to pass itself off as a Kiwi bank.
ASB’s new tagline, which trumpets the fact it’s been a Kiwi bank since 1847, as well as the public response to it, tends to indicate ownership is, in fact, rather important. Anderton says it has been 100 per cent owned by the Commonwealth Bank of Australia since 2000 and no-one really knows who owns that (maybe it’s Goldstein?) so the MP and a few others feel ASB is drawing a fairly long bow with this claim.
Kiwibank certainly hasn’t been shy in sticking the boot into its Aussie competitors in the past. In fact, that’s been the central focus of its campaigns.
It got a slap on the wrist in 2007 for imploring Kiwi students to sign up for accounts from Aussie banks temporarily and then bag all their freebies and also uttering inflammatory phrases such as “those Aussie bankers are out to get you”.
Their “reprehensible” ads of late have remained staunchly anti-Aussie, too.
Perhaps the Kiwibank (as well as the TSB and SBS) resistance is having its desired effect.