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Wizard scores Grant Fox

Fri 18 June 2004

Wizard scores Grant Fox

Friday, 18 June 2004: Grant Fox, former All Black and coach of the Auckland Rugby NPC team has opened a Wizard Home Loans branch in Finance Plaza, Albert Street, Auckland in partnership with Philip Lacey.

Grant Fox said he was attracted to Wizard when he heard a Wizard presentation to Auckland Rugby staff as part of its sponsorship of Auckland Rugby.

"I was intrigued by the Wizard story, the entrepreneurship of the business and Wizard's keenness to support the idea of families going to the rugby together by developing the 'Wizard Home Loans family area' at Eden Park.

"It's good to see a business encouraging family interest in the game. The family area is a real success story and sold out last season. By teaming up with Auckland Rugby, Wizard has made it possible to make a day at the rugby an affordable and favourite pastime for Auckland families. It's a great concept and rugby will be the winner."

Fox said he had been on the lookout for a business which could build on his strengths and fit with his commitments to rugby, and compliment his sports marketing company Carnegie Sports International NZ Limited, (Carnegie).

"Over the years I have got to know a lot of people through rugby and, along with my personal business philosophy of under promising and over delivering, it's what has brought in business for Carnegie. It's a way of operating that I look for in companies I choose to associate with, along with a commitment to building strong relationships with clients and providing good service - nothing is too much trouble and people appreciate that," Grant Fox said.

John Grant, head of Wizard in New Zealand said attracting someone of Grant Fox's calibre and commitment, is pleasing and the financial knowledge and expertise which Philip Lacey brings to the partnership makes it a winning combination. Lacey has 22 years of lending experience.

Grant Fox's 10 reasons for joining Wizard Home Loans.

* community-based philosophy * family focus * owner operated/personal service * competitive rates/best prices * not a bank, not a broker * accessibility * reward sales and maintenance of relationships * entrepreneurial and innovative business model * services tailored to the self-employed, and * they love rugby

Wizard opened its first New Zealand branch in Auckland, in 2000. The unique owner-operated model drew inspiration from the cost-effective Countrywide Financial Corporation format from the United States.
In Australia Wizard began by opening branches as fast as the banks were closing them and New Zealand followed. Now the Wizard model is being copied by banks and non-bank lenders alike.
Long term, Wizard plans to grow its network to 300 throughout Australia and New Zealand - making it the dominant non-bank distribution model.

In just six years Wizard has grown from a single branch with a single shareholder to a network of more than 200 branches, with the backing of quality shareholders ABN AMRO, Deutsche Asset Management and the PBL Group.


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