Bank to close in Guam, discussing future ownership options

The ANZ bank announced March 31 its intention to withdraw from Guam and “exit community banking” in the island, as well as in American Samoa.

ANZ said it is “in discussions with other parties about the future ownership options for its business in Guam.

“In American Samoa and Guam, ANZ’s competitive position is not as compelling. US community banking is not in line with ANZ’s key strengths, which is impacting our ability to meet the needs of customers in American Samoa and Guam,” the bank said.

It further said, “While our Pacific business did not make a profit last year, ANZ is committed to the economic, social and environment development of the Pacific, particularly as the region recovers from the impact of COVID-19.”

ANZ reported gross revenues of $9.67 million for 2020 and $14.10 million for 2019 in the Deloitte & Touche ASC Trust list of the Top Companies in Micronesia in the November-December 2021 issue of Guam Business Magazine. The bank has one branch in Hagatna and 55 employees.

CSB reported revenues of $9.16 million in the Deloitte & Touche ASC Trust Corp. 2006 Top Companies list. CSB incorporated in 1990 and had a staff of 68 in 2006 and three branches.

Clarke Schaumann, CEO of ANZ Guam Inc., said, “This was not a decision we made lightly but we have consulted with our staff and we will support them as we go through this transition period.”

ANZ will wind down its business in American Samoa in the next six months, the bank said.

ANZ entered the market in Guam in 2007 with its purchase of Citizens Bancorp, which did business as Citizens Security Bank, for what Journal sources said at the time was $25 million.

The purchase was part of ANZ’s growth strategy in the Asia-Pacific market.

The managing director of ANZ for the Pacific in 2007 told the Journal, “We have an interest in the Micronesian Pacific to complement our operations in the Polynesian and Melanesian Pacific, as well as to follow the trade flows through Asia and Australia and places where we do business.” The bank was aiming for a similar growth that it saw after its entry to American Samoa in 2000, where it increased market share from 17% at entry to just under 50%.

Citizens Security Bank was founded and locally chartered in 1990.

At the time of its purchase by ANZ, local board members were invited to remain, with Kurt S. Moylan, president and chairman of Moylan’s Insurance Underwriters Inc. as chairman of the board.

The current board includes Laura-Lynne V. Dacanay, former senior vice president and Guam-CNMI region manager at First Hawaiian Bank, chairwoman; Joseph F. Camacho, who is chairman of the Audit Committee; Wilfred K. Yamamoto, principal broker of Yamamoto Realty, Attorney Vanessa Williams, Tessa Price, ANZ regional executive for the Pacific; Brent Turner, ANZ chief risk officer for the Pacific; and Schaumann.

Other banks have also left Guam in recent years.

Citibank exited the Guam market in December 2015, after a 46-year presence. HSBC exited Guam in 2002, after 26 years of doing business.

Aside from ANZ, the island’s other banks are Bank of Guam, First Commercial Bank, Bank of Hawaii, First Hawaiian Bank and BankPacific. Between them, the banks are represented in the Northern Mariana Islands, Palau, the Federated States of Micronesia and the Marshall Islands.

According to its website, ANZ is one of the five largest companies in Australia, and the leading bank in New Zealand. It operates in 30 countries across Australia, New Zealand, Asia, the Pacific. the UK, Europe and the U.S. mainland, including a technology and operations centre in Bangalore, India.


Additional COVID booster shots available in Guam

DPHSS issued a “standing order” March 31 for the second booster dose of either the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccines for individuals 50 years of age or older and for certain immunocompromised individuals following completion of a three-dose primary vaccination series. The standing order provides guidance as follows:

  • People ages 12 years and older who are moderately or severely immunocompromised may receive a second booster dose using an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine at least 4 months after the first booster dose
  • Adults ages 50 years and older who are not moderately or severely immunocompromised may receive a second booster dose using an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine at least 4 months after the first booster dose.
  • People ages 18-49 years who are not moderately or severely immunocompromised and who received Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine as both their primary series dose and booster dose may receive a second booster dose using an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine at least 4 months after the first Janssen booster dose

To read the standing order in its entirety and make appointments, CLICK HERE. Private clinics and medical practices are understood to have supplies for additional booster shots.


Airport below budget on operating expenses

During the March 31 Guam International Airport Authority board of directors meeting, Antoinette L. Bautista, acting comptroller; said that the airport had a total operating revenue of $12.4 million for the month of February, as well as being below budget on operating expenses by 22%.

In addition, the Federal Aviation Administration finished part one of an inspection on March 23 and identified three minor findings that needed to be fixed, out of a total of 123 items. According to John M. Quinata, executive manager, the three items “will be closed out soon” and the main finding from the inspection is that “the Guam airport is a safe and secure airport.”


GovGuam Retirement Fund increases assets, maintains low risk status

The Office of Public Accountability released April 1 its opinion on the Government of Guam Retirement Fund’s financial statements, report on compliance and internal control.

The fund closed fiscal 2021 with a combined increase of $361.3 million in net position, or net income of $2.74 billion, compared to its prior year net position of $2.38 billion. The Defined Benefit Plan investment portfolio achieved a rate of return of 19.04% compared with 4.33% in the prior year, which highly exceeded the board’s long-term goal of a minimum of 7%.

 The Fund remained a “low risk auditee” for the fourth consecutive year.

For further details see The Guam Power Authority’s fiscal 2021 audit report is also available on the site.


Beware IP&E Instagram scam

IP&E has recently discovered that an unknown third party is posing as the company’s brands, Shell and Foody’s Guam on Instagram and sending fraudulent offers to followers, according to a March 31 release.

IP&E would like to warn customers that these imposter Instagram accounts have been following and informing official shellfoodysguam followers that they have won $200 in Shell fuel and then provide instructions to claim their prize. Instructions include clicking on a link, submitting their phone number, and checking their email for verification. The link provided redirects the reader to a website to claim e-books.

The official Shell / Foody’s Guam Instagram handle is @shellfoodysguam.

Any accounts with variations of spelling or punctuation are not affiliated with Shell, Foody’s Guam, nor IP&E.  Also, @shellfoodysguam is “Public” so this account can be viewed by all Instagram users.

Shell and Foody’s Guam did launch an Instagram promotion named $2000 Shell Fuel Give-Away on March 18 that will continue until May 27. A total of ten winners will receive $200 worth of PACIFICPOINTS that can be used just like cash for Shell fuel or Foody’s store items. Winners will be announced on our official account Instagram Story every Friday at 12PM. If you do receive a notification that you are a winner, please confirm that this message comes from the official Shell and Foody’s account: @shellfoodysguam. mbj