Smit delved into the history of his branch and said, “The train, later dubbed the ‘Bank Special’ left De Aar for the newly acquired territory of SWA on 14 August 1915. On board were 15 bank officials seven of these from National Bank which focused its attention on the largest settlements of Luderitz on 19 August, Windhoek and Swakopmund on 23 August and Keetmanshoop on 31 August from rented premises. In 1915 Keetmanshoop National Bank was the first and only bank in town. Despite this the bank showed a loss for three consecutive years. The branch in those days was manned by two staff members, Mr SG Richards and his accountant Mr OEE Rascher.”
Smit added that the branch has come a long way since those days. In May 2007, after a N$1, 9 million facelift the new branch was opened. The branch today employs 22 staff members and plays a most important role in the local economy of the town. The branch will have 7 ATMs under its management in support of bringing banking to the people and allowing for self service banking, no matter where in Keetmanshoop.
Smit said that he and the staff of FNB Keetmanshoop are very excited to be part of the bank’s rich history. “To be part of this branch at this particular time is an honour for all of us who work here and bank here as we play an integral part at this time in the beginning of the next 100 years.”
“We see ourselves as the ignition to a great beginning of our second centenary of banking in Keetmanshoop,” he said.