Scottish Building Society makes important community pledge after hailing 'positive' year
The Edinburgh-based mutual announced a pre-tax profit of £3.3 million and said it had steadily grown its customer base, with the cost-of-living crisis motivating people to “make their money work harder for them”. The venerable institution now holds mortgage assets of £496m, up £42m from the previous year, and has grown its savings balances to £418m.
Meanwhile, the society said it was continuing to invest in its high street presence, with major investments made to refurbish its Troon, Inverness and Galashiels “relationship centres” over the last 12 months. It is also re-locating its Edinburgh centre to a prime city-centre location on Frederick Street, which is scheduled to open in June.
Chief executive Paul Denton said: “There can be no denying the very difficult economic climate we face. However, these results show that our values and our offering is continuing to appeal to customers. Our focus on providing uncomplicated saving and mortgage products in a friendly manner has built a trust with customers, many of whom have been with Scottish Building Society for decades. Profits are retained in the business to support future growth and to enable the society to remain modern, efficient and sustainable for the next 175 years.”
As part of its 175th anniversary, the society is set to launch a charitable foundation that will provide an initial £175,000 of funding into “invaluable” community services and organisations. Delivered in partnership with Foundation Scotland, the Scottish Building Society Foundation will benefit an array of Scottish organisations “for years to come”, it said, as it prioritises making a positive lasting impact in the communities in which it serves.
Denton added: “Launching the Scottish Building Society Foundation comes at a very important milestone for us as we mark our 175th anniversary. It will enable us to build longer term relationships with various community groups and mirrors our values as a people-first business. We are looking forward to officially launching the foundation in May and seek to establish a best-in-class benchmark supporting community-based organisations across Scotland.”