Skipton comments on changes in banking market

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"At Skipton International, our business is performing well and we continue to plan for future growth. We have just reported record business levels. We are the largest lender for new mortgages in Guernsey for the third year in a row, so ours is a very different business approach from that adopted by organisations which just seek offshore deposits in the local Guernsey and Jersey markets. It is true that there have been changes to the ways in which banks collecting deposits in Guernsey can deal with those funds ? it is no longer as attractive to simply lend such funds back to your parent organisation, and we stopped such practice some time ago.

Since 2002, though, we have been an active participant in the Guernsey mortgage market and since 2005 we have been an important lender in Jersey too, where now over 1000 homeowners have a Skipton International Mortgage. Our business is therefore very different from that of a pure deposit taker, we are in effect more like a traditional building society, active both in the lending and savings markets, which complement each other and make for a more stable and longer term business approach.

Guernsey remains core for us both a market and the centre for our business. We will continue to deliver a level of service to our customers in Guernsey, Jersey and Alderney that is second to none. Outside of our banking business, were also major contributors to local life being the leading sponsor of the Skipton Swimarathon in Guernsey, supporters of the Liberation day celebrations and in Jersey, we are the lead sponsor of the popular Skipton Open Studios event."

David Cutter, Group Chief Executive of Skipton Building Society, Skipton International's parent, said, "Skipton has operated in the Channel Islands for over 15 years now and we have no plans to change our successful business model. We have built a strong stable business, based on solid financial strength and great service. Importantly, our model is based on accepting retail deposits as well as providing residential mortgage finance which creates a self-sustaining approach. This gives balance to the business and we have no plans to change it".