People’s Choice members, participating in the organisation’s first online Annual General Meeting, have heard the organisation is in a strong financial and market position heading into the new year.
The AGM, conducted entirely online to allow members across Australia to attend and to remove any concerns relating to COVID-19, also reflects People’s Choice’s drive to offering a full digital experience for members.
Chairman Michael Cameron told the meeting that People’s Choice is ‘well prepared for the journey ahead’, having finished the financial year with comparative net profit (before tax) growing by 12% to $53.98 million. Statutory net profit rose more than 5% to $22.2 million, despite costs of $7.2 million due to the pandemic.
At the same time, People’s Choice recorded a rise in residential lending to $7.4 billion, an increase of 4% which is 1.5 times the industry average. Total member deposits rose by 6% to $6.6 billion, the organisation’s total assets increased to $9.5 billion, up 7%, and welcomed almost 17,000 new members – a net increase of 5,700.
During the meeting, member-elected Directors Amanda Heyworth and Virginia Hickey were reappointed to the Board.
The motion to update the Constitution was overwhelmingly endorsed by members with 93.5% supporting the motion. In doing so, members agreed to a range of measures to improve governance and to also allow for the potential issuance of Mutual Capital Instruments. These new financial instruments will allow People’s Choice to potentially raise capital to support various strategic initiatives whilst maintaining its mutual status.