Back in 1985 the government proposed to merge all of New Zealand’s twelve independent banks into one big one. They delivered an ultimatum – get in line or be doomed.

We decided we didn’t want to throw away 130 years of independence. We knew it wouldn’t be in the best interests of our customers.

The pressure to merge was intense – from the other banks, and the government. 

We stood firm.

The merger went ahead without us. But within a few years it faltered and was sold off to a big Aussie bank. 

So how did it work out for us? We went from strength to strength – with customers from Cape Reinga to Bluff, to all corners of the world.

We’re still making our own decisions. Still giving customers the kind of care and attention we’ve always been known for.

Putting customers first is as important to us today as it was nearly 28 years ago. It’s just a better way to bank.


Here are just some achievements we've clocked up along the way.


New Plymouth Savings Bank established by proclamation of Governor in Chief Sir George Grey. The rationale..."If New Plymouth can help themselves to obtain independence or at least accumulate resources wherewith to meet any unexpected crisis they would be less likely to lean upon state or [New Zealand] company support. The bank will be self-reliant, unsupported by government expenditure or the aid of British money. New Plymouth settlers are to become independent and provide a means for them to accumulate resources to assist should any crises develop." 

Business was conducted from an office at the New Plymouth Police Station on Mt Eliot. The first deposit made by Waitera Te Karei, who rode 100km along beach and coastline from Mokau to make a deposit of 35 Pounds. The Bank’s accountant was paid an annual salary of 20 pounds in those days, so Waitera’s deposit was sizable.


The first branch office opens in New Plymouth’s old Post Office Building on Brougham Street. Throughout the following 100 years 14 more branches open in Taranaki.


To align with the network expansion outside of New Plymouth District, the Bank renames to Taranaki Savings Bank.


The Bank installs its first computers.


First to offer free, interest-bearing cheque accounts.


First in New Zealand to research, develop and use bank-wide, real-time computer processing.


Bank deposits reach $50 million.


First in New Zealand to develop automated teller machines – ATM’s or ‘Cashflow’. In a bold move, the Bank ordered four machines for its City, Centre, Fitzroy and Hawera branches. As the population of Taranaki at this time was about 104,000, this decision was seen as radical.


Labour Government is voted in and begins deregulation of the financial sector.


Other regional Trustee Savings Banks merged because it was necessary to survive in the new economic conditions of deregulation, and many of New Zealand’s banks became owned by overseas interests. In the face of industry and government opposition, Taranaki’s bank was determined to remain independent. The self-reliant vision of the bank’s forefathers had been retained to ensure that it remained 100% New Zealand owned. With this confirmed independence came the establishment of the TSB Community Trust – the Bank’s shareholder.


First to develop and use employee-written software to form the most modern and sophisticated information system in the Southern Hemisphere.


Taranaki Savings Bank changed its name to TSB Bank to better reflect its now nationwide presence.


TSB Bank deposits reach $500 million.


With the sale of Trustbank to Westpac, TSB Bank is at this date, now the only bank to be 100% New Zealand owned. TSB Bank Direct established for banking customers outside Taranaki catchment region.


TSB Bank deposits reach $1 billion. TSB Bank Loan Direct established for lending customers outside Taranaki catchment region. For the first time, the Bank was rated 'Best Bank' in the University of Auckland Survey of Residential Bank Customers.


Christchurch Home Loan Centre is established.


TSB Bank Auckland Home Loan Lounge opens in Newmarket, Auckland.


Lending portfolio reaches $1 billion milestone.


TSB Bank deposits reach $2 billion.


National network expansion continues, with the opening of TSB Bank Wellington.


Opening of TSB Bank Hamilton.
Deposits reach $2.5 billion.


TSB Banks Tauranga and Hastings open.


Deposits hit $3 billion. TSB Banks Palmerston North, Auckland Central and Takapuna open.


Deposits reach $3.5 billion. TSB Bank Napier opens. TSB Bank Christchurch opens.


Deposits reach $4 billion. TSB Bank turns 160. The TSB Bank museum opens. "From Faith to Fortune - The TSB Bank Story 1850-2010" is published, chronicling the Bank's first 160 years in business. TSB Bank Nelson opens.


TSB Bank Newmarket opens.