Building societies to rival high street banks online

Building societies to rival high street banks online

UK building societies are in prime position to attack the online financial services market, currently dominated by the larger high-street banks, says retail banking systems vendor Aspace Solutions.

Research conducted by Aspace of the Internet offerings provided by the UK's 67 building societies in August 2001 shows the majority (65) have established a Web presence. Eighteen per cent of sites offered the facility to apply for accounts online and six per cent provided transactional account management facilities.

Steve Keohane, managing director of Aspace Solutions, says building societies have been spared substantial investment in the Web to date because the demands of their clients have been less complex.

With consumer demand for online financial services significant, and the emergence of a range of hosted e-banking modules from companies such as Aspace, building societies are now well positioned to cherry-pick a sizeable piece of the Internet banking market from a relatively low cost-base, predicts Keohane.

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