First Nations Foundation

iba partnership launch breakfast group photo june 2021

Partnership for Indigenous home ownership

The launch of two new strategic partnerships – Australian Unity Bank and Bank Australia – supports Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in their financial success.

The partnership demonstrates an important collaboration with segments of the corporate sector committed to the economic independence of Indigenous Australians.

Australian Unity Bank and Bank Australia will deliver a diverse range of products and services to IBA customers that facilitate financial success and economic independence in a relevant and culturally sensitive way.

Christine Yates, Chief Executive Officer of Retail, Australian Unity, said the partnership reaffirmed Australian Unity’s commitment to building strong and respectful relationships with Indigenous Australia.

“We know that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people remain overrepresented among financially vulnerable Australians, and that home ownership can lead to significantly improved socio-economic outcomes,” Ms Yates said.

Damien Walsh, Bank Australia Managing Director said that partnering with IBA to provide values-aligned access to finance for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is an important step in helping to build a fairer and more inclusive society.

“Working with IBA will help us to better meet the needs of First Nations people on their home ownership journeys, and we hope to continue to learn from IBA to improve our ability to support First Nations people in building their financial independence.”

IBA provided their 20,000th home loan to the Indigenous community in 2020. This bank panel arrangement builds on IBA’s ongoing commitment to Indigenous prosperity, reconciliation and genuine relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, their communities and Indigenous businesses.

Peter O’Neill, former Acting Chief Executive Officer of IBA, said the partnerships with Australian Unity Bank and Bank Australia would support new and existing customers take ownership of their home and their future.

“We’re always working hard to ensure the best for our customers, and after months of discussion we are delighted to partner with two banks that align with our values to provide new lending options,” Mr O’Neill said.

“These strategic partnerships demonstrate an important collaboration with segments of the corporate sector committed to the economic independence of Indigenous Australians.”

The dedicated teams at both banks have undertaken formal cultural understanding training to ensure a smooth transition for IBA customers and provide them with the guidance and service quality they are accustomed to through their existing relationship.

The partnership was launched at an event on 6 May in Melbourne with Ian Hamm, Chair, First Nations Foundation, as the keynote speaker and a heartfelt Welcome to Country by Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung Elder Uncle Ringo Terrick.

Read more about the partnership and impact it makes on Indigenous home ownership at https://iba.gov.au/2021/05/a-pathway-to-opportunity/.