Chris has been involved in agribusiness banking for more than 10 years. Originally from Melbourne, he studied agricultural science and agribusiness at Latrobe. He saw opportunities to work in a diverse and promising industry and the options to work anywhere in the country. From working on relative’s farms in school holidays, to getting to help hundreds of farmers with their finances every day – Chris has always respected the importance of farmers to the world.
Like many with a dream of farming, buying land wasn’t an option, so his way of staying in the field was using his financial skills to help others. ‘I’ve always been good at finance, and it’s something that can help farmers a great deal, which is very rewarding,’ Chris said.
Based in Perth, Chris looks after most of Bankwest’s rural sector, and enjoys the wide range of farming businesses he handles, from the small farm to the large corporate entities.
As for the challenges of the next decade, Chris sees season and price volatility as major risks and having a solid financial service was a key element to keeping business sustainable into the future.
He said while corporate farm businesses are rapidly growing in WA with many smaller farms being bought out by larger farmers and businesses, it wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. ‘It’s not your traditional farming; they are changing the face of agriculture but that’s not a bad thing. The corporates are investing in the land and infrastructure and employing locals and they have the capital to invest in farm improvement methods that the previous owner may not have had.’
Roles are changing, Bankwest are not just looking at the pre-farm gate portion of the farm business. Chris said they had a lot more to offer farmers beyond just a rate service, but a whole business banking service. ‘We offer banking solutions, seek to have an in-depth understanding of our client’s business and help them build networks beyond the figures,’ Chris said. ‘I work with the farmer to see where they’re going and align pathways to help them reach their business goals.’
With a focus on Agribusiness, Bankwest send daily Agri-commodities updates and invest in producing reports relevant to the farming regions in WA. The Planfarm Bankwest Benchmarks report [HYPERLINK] is WA’s leading report into the financial and production performance of broad acre farm businesses. It provides a reliable indication of the performance of broad acre farm businesses and allows farmers to compare their performance.
If you would like a copy of the recent Planfarm Bankwest Benchmark report, would like to receive the daily Agri-commodities update or would like to discuss your farming business with Chris, you can contact him on 0427 986 759 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on Bankwest’s Agribusiness services, you can find out more on our website.