Swansea Building Society to open new Swansea office

Swansea Building Society is set to open a new branch on Portland Street in Swansea City Centre later this year having secured planning permission from Swansea Council.

Its existing Swansea branch on Cradock Street will remain the company's headquarters and expand further as it takes on more back office staff to support its growing network of branches. The new Portland Street retail branch will provide a more central location for its customers.

The announcement was made by Alun Williams, chief executive officer of Swansea Building Society, at the society's Annual General Meeting (AGM) held at Swansea's Liberty Stadium on Thursday 20 April.

The new Swansea branch will complement the society's other branches in Mumbles and Carmarthen. Williams said that he feels opening a branch in the heart of the city centre will provide a more accessible location for customers and help generate further growth for the Society.

The new branch office will be located at 3-4 Portland Street in a space previously occupied by a jewellery store. It is also in the vicinity of several other national banking brands, all adding to the visibility of Swansea Building Society and its viability as an alternative option for financial services.

"We need more space in our head office to accommodate growth. The launch of the Portland Street branch will allow us to both free up space in Cradock Street and place our customer-facing branch in the heartland of Swansea, boosting our profile and visibility at the same time," Williams said.

Williams anticipates that the new branch will be officially opened to the public in the fourth quarter of 2017.

The AGM also formally announced Swansea Building Society's 2016 results. The society enjoyed a strong increase in its total assets and a modest increase in its profits in 2016, mainly driven by the success of its newest branch in Carmarthen, which generated increased retail savings and mortgage balances during the year.

The building society's annual income was £5.7m in 2016, an increase of £300,000 or 6% on its income of £5.4m a year earlier.

The society also increased its net profit to just over £2m, an increase of £12,000 in comparison to 2015, despite the appointment of additional staff at its Carmarthen branch and head office, and continued investment in its IT systems.

The society's total loan book increased to £185m in 2016, an increase of £15.2m or 8.9% on the £170m outstanding in 2015. This helped generate an operating profit before impairment losses and Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) provisions of £2.7m, which, in turn, led to increased capital, which now stands at £17.8m.