NAB abandons its global dream – at a huge future cost

Just a few years ago, NAB had big plans to be a major player in the agricultural boom. But with the focus now on paying shareholders ever-increasing dividends, that vision has been lost.

And so we mark the end of a dream that an Australian bank might become a leading global financier for an industry we see as a major Australian growth area in the next two decades.

I am talking about the National Australia Bank’s dream to become a significant agricultural bank outside Australia. In 2007 the then-chief executive John Stewart gave the grand plan a start when he bought US agricultural bank, Great Western.

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