Leeds holds AGM
Members voted overwhelmingly for the re-election of Robert Wade and David Pickersgill and for the election to the board of Carol Kavanagh.
The chairman, Robert Wade said: “As an independent mutual building society with one member, one vote, we are delighted with this emphatic endorsement from our members, with each director receiving over 90% votes in favour.
“I am also very pleased to welcome Carol Kavanagh to the board. Carol is Human Resources Director and one of only 9 directors on the main board at Argos Ltd, which has 650 stores and over 20,000 staff in the UK. During her successful career, Carol has gained over 20 years experience in retail and this is her only non-executive appointment. She will continue in her senior role at Argos Ltd.
“We delivered an excellent financial performance in 2005, with profits, lending and savings balances all at record levels, thereby producing the Society's best ever results. We also achieved a further milestone with our assets now exceeding £7bn, up from £6bn a year ago and £5bn in 2003.
“This year, we can look forward to a merger with Mercantile Building Society, which is expected to be effective on 1 August 2006, subject to approval by the Mercantile members and confirmation by the Financial Services Authority (FSA). The FSA has consented to Leeds Building Society proceeding by Board resolution and the combined Society will be named Leeds Building Society.
“Our financial strength, combined with the investments we have made in technology, service and staff, means that we are extremely well placed to achieve the objectives we have set to make Leeds Building Society even more successful in the short, medium and long term.”
The highlights of the record results announced by the Society are listed below:
– 15% rise in assets to a new record level of £7.1bn
– Pre-tax profits up by 18% to a record £50.2m
– Record mortgage lending of £1.7bn (£1.6bn in 2004)
– Savings balances rise by £446m to a record £4.5bn
– Cost asset ratio improved again to 62p per £100 of assets (67p in 2004), one of the lowest levels of any bank or building society
– Cost income ratio improved even further to 44% from 47% one of the best in the industry
– Increase in reserves to a record £351m