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Wizard Home Loans Launched

Mediacom-Release-Wizard-Home-Loans Wizard Launches In New Zealand

FIRST OFFICE IN WEST AUCKLAND

Wizard Home Loans today launched its operations in West Auckland, New Zealand, officially opening the first in a network of satellite offices.

Wizard Home Loans' Executive Chairman, Mr Mark Bouris, said Wizard's entry into New Zealand followed their commitment to the market in late 1999 and the intention to offer the full range of Wizard lending products in the New Zealand marketplace.

Since opening its doors in February 1997, Wizard has become Australia's leading non-bank financial institution and are aiming for the same level of growth in New Zealand

"Wizard will bring an important competitive edge to the New Zealand financial services sector. We offer some of the most competitive rates in the market and with the no application fees, no on-going fees nature of Wizard, the lending products in New Zealand will set us apart from the competition.

"With a further two branches planned for Auckland, one in Wellington and one in Christchurch before the end of the year, Wizard offices will be readily accessible to many New Zealanders by the end of 2000.

"The New Zealand team headed up by finance professional Grant Garner have received extensive training based on the success of Wizard's successful customer service operation. Our Auckland office will be the anchor of the New Zealand network and will provide talented and trained people to run offices throughout New Zealand.

"This method puts Wizard's top talent at the helm of our presence in the community, and gives them the backing of Wizard's competitive products, our powerful processing system, our unparalleled call centre and our unique online loan servicing facility.

"Rod Kay, manager of the West Auckland Wizard branch, is a wonderful advocate for Wizard. He is testimony to the talent, experience and commitment of the Wizard team and the resulting high service standard available to our customers."

Following from the successful formula established in Australia, each office will cover the same area as a major local newspaper, and will be owned and operated by its manager. Wizard will provide the product, ongoing training and education, hardware, software, all loan application processing, and borrower after-sales service, as well as a marketing fund to cover advertising in local media, and local sponsorships.

"There are a number of critical points of difference between us and our competitors. Firstly, we are a low cost operator, we have always worked leanly and efficiently, and that's reflected in the fact that we will offer among New Zealand's most competitive rates," Mr Bouris said.

"Secondly, at a time when major banks are shutting down branches because of a groaning infrastructure that they can't support, we are able to provide true service by opening offices in the areas where borrowers need service most. Because we're efficient, we don't have to load rates to make borrowers pay for our network.

"And finally, we have built our business from the ground up to take advantage of the latest technology to increase our efficiency still further, and have formed a joint venture with ABN Amro, one of the world's largest banks, which makes our back-office processing second to none."

"Wizard's success has been recognized in Australia with Wizard being voted the 2000 best non-bank financial services company at the recent Australian Banking & Finance Magazine Awards. Wizard was also awarded the 1999 Teleperformance International Customer Service Grand Prix award for the Wizard customer service centre, ahead of runner up CBA and third placed Bank of New Zealand, and was given the Gold Award in the All Industries category."

Mr Bouris said he expected the Auckland office, and eventually the New Zealand network, to have a major impact on Wizard's business.

ENDS

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