The Banker magazine has named Bank of The Bahamas (BOB) 'Best Bank' in the country for the third time, bestowing upon it the coveted Bracken Award. BOB Managing Director Paul McWeeney said the honor "affirmed the bank's commitment to community while never losing sight of its primary goals of providing value for customers and for shareholders as we invest in businesses that help to build the economy of the country." He also called the honour "an international tribute and recognition that commitment to people and community creates a winning competition regardless of economic challenge."
In an article announcing the award, The Banker said, "As with many less diversified economies, The Bahamas was hit hard by the global economic downturn. Bank of The Bahamas ntook a long-term approach and made a $1.2 million investment in technology and in various programs aimed at consolidating customer loyalty and generating higher product demand in the future, once the economic situation improves. The bank's involvement with the wider Caribbean community was also notable.” Editors applauded the bank's involvement in relief efforts for Haiti, its national book drive, efforts to support an orphanage (Ranfurly Home for Children) and other causes.
BOB financing powered more than $50 million in growth over the last year in the country's economy. "Several success stories punctuated a year marked by challenges," said Mr. McWeeney. "The bank finalized technology and comprehensive training, and moved to a new integrated systems platform, freeing up staff time to devote to customer service and opening the door to new business opportunities. Secondly, despite economic challenges, the bank's performance was strong, with solid net earnings and record total assets. Of special pride was our bank's response to community needs."
BOB, with nearly $800 million in assets, operates 12 branches and a financial services center in Coral Gables, Florida. "The Banker magazine’s Bank of the Year Awards, now in its 11th year, was designed to recognize great achievements and is ever more important as the industry faces huge challenges," said Brian Caplen, editor of The Banker, a division of The Financial Times Ltd. Calling challenges in some places "monumental," Caplen noted that "the majority of the world's banks are successfully carrying out their normal business... some achieving this positive outcome in the midst of hugely difficult conditions."