The Society's dual origins lie in Northampton (1848) and within the co-operative movement in London (1883) respectively. Over a hundred mergers later—most notably the merger between the Nationwide and the Anglia Building Societies in 1987—they are now the UK's second largest mortgage lender and savings provider. More significantly, it is the largest building society in the world and committed to staying mutual. The company is keen to emphasise that it does not have "shareholders", it has "members".
On 12th September 2006 the Society announced plans to merge with Portman Building Society, creating a mutual body with assets of more than ￡160bn. This merger completed successfully on 28th August 2007.
28 August 2007 - Nationwide successfully completes merger of the former Portman Building Society
23 April 2007 - Portman Building Society AGM; members vote in favour of the proposed merger between Portman Building Society and Nationwide Building Society.
18 April 2007 - Nationwide re-launches its sponsorship of the UK's four national football teams with its 'Sponsored by you' campaign.
1 April 2007 - Graham Beale takes over as Chief Executive following the retirement of Philip Williamson.
Ranked 9th in the Best Big Companies to Work For list produced by The Sunday Times (UK)|The Sunday Times.
Announced a deal with Legal & General to market their life insurance products and sell Nationwide's bancassurance arm, Nationwide Investment Group, to L&G.
Fined ￡980,000 by the Financial Services Authority after an enquiry into the theft of an employee's laptop exposed security flaws.- On 20th February 2007 it was reported that this fine would be paid by Nationwide's members rather than by the directors who were directly accountable.-
Experienced a security breach that potentially compromised the personal information of members after a company laptop computer was stolen from an employee's home during a burglary in August 2006.- However, no customers have lost any money as a result.
Announced proposed merger with Portman Building Society and named Graham Beale (Group Finance Director) as Chief Executive Designate of the Society, taking over on 1 April 2007.
Sold at.home Nationwide to ARIM Ltd, which rebranded the business to Uk Home Lets.
Ranked 3rd in the Best Big Companies to Work For list produced by The Sunday Times (UK)|The Sunday Times.
Assets at a record ￡120.6bn for the year ended 4 April 2006. Pre-tax profits of ￡539.4 million.
Ranked 1st in the Best Big Companies to Work For list produced by The Sunday Times (UK)|The Sunday Times and the Department of Trade and Industry.
Total assets of the Nationwide Building Society exceed ￡100 billion (￡100,000 million), strengthening its status as the largest building society in the world - a position which it has held since 1997. Its asset size placed it as the 7th largest financial organisation on the UK high street.
Nationwide overtakes the clearing bank Barclays Bank|Barclays to become UK|Britain's fourth largest mortgage lender, with more than 1 million mortgage customers.
Savings balances of Nationwide Building Society members, more than ￡65 billion (￡65,000 million) in total, position Nationwide as the third largest savings provider in the UK.
Society Carpetbagger#Contemporary use|carpetbaggers propose a resolution for another vote by Nationwide members to demutualise|convert the society to a bank. The resolution is rejected by the Nationwide board on legal grounds.
Cash machine surcharge campaigning in 1999 results in withdrawals from most Automatic teller machine|cash machines owned by UK banks becoming free for customers of all banks and building societies throughout the UK.
Nationwide Building Society, together with various UK tabloid newspapers and media, launches a campaign against controversial cash machine fees. The campaign reaches a peak when Barclays Bank announces a plan to charge all customers of rival banks and financial providers, including those of Nationwide, ￡1 for every cash machine withdrawal made from a Barclays-owned automatic teller machine|cash machine. This prompts Nationwide Building Society to warn Barclays that it would take legal action against the bank if it did not back down. Nationwide claims Barclays has broken the rules of the LINK network of cash machines, which the bank had joined earlier the same year.
Society members seeking a windfall, branded as Carpetbagger#Contemporary use|carpetbaggers by the UK media, meant Nationwide members go to vote on whether to demutualise the society and float on the London Stock Exchange. The attempt fails, despite media reports of possible pay-outs to members of around ￡1,000 to ￡1,500 each, as Nationwide members vote by a narrow margin of 33,700 against converting the building society into a bank.
At its Swindon headquarters, Nationwide pilots the use of iris recognition in cash machines. This project was since cancelled due to it not being cost effective.
Launches the UK’s first internet banking service on 27 May 1997.
The first VISA (credit card)|Visa/Delta debit card in the world from a Building Society is launched by Nationwide. Barclays, TSB and Lloyds Bank had already been providing them, but they were banks.
Merger of the Nationwide and Anglia Building Society. The new society is known as Nationwide Anglia Building Society at first, but the word Anglia is dropped in 1992. The merger also results in the now-familiar Nationwide logo.
The Co-operative Permanent Building Society changes its name to Nationwide Building Society. The name was suggested by the then chairman, Leonard Williams, and borrowed from the BBC current affairs programme, Nationwide (TV series)|Nationwide.
The Co-operative Permanent has assets of ￡670 million and over one million members.
The company is the former title sponsor of the Football League, the Football Conference and the FA Women's Premier League. Nationwide also sponsored the football teams Northampton Town F.C.|Northampton Town and Swindon Town F.C.|Swindon Town until 2007 when the contracts were terminated. Nationwide has offices in both towns.
The sponsorship of the Football League lasted from 1996 until 2004, while the sponsorship of the Conference ran from 1999 until 2007.
The company is also the sponsor of the Nationwide Mercury Music Prize.
Nationwide currently sponsors all four national football teams of the United Kingdom: England national football team|England, Wales national football team|Wales, Scotland national team|Scotland and Northern Ireland national football team|Northern Ireland. To differentiate itself from the tried and tested method of sponsorship by plc companies, Nationwide is demonstrating its mutual status with a 'Sponsored by you' campaign aimed at giving the benefits of sponsorship back to the membership as well as having members’ names appear on shirts and signage etc.
Sponsored by you
Nationwide wholly owns several subsidiary companies, including:
The Mortgage Works plc
Mortgage provider of Buy to Let, Self Certification, Sub Prime & 100% Mortgages
Nationwide Life Limited
Provides life assurance.
Nationwide Unit Trust Managers Ltd.
A company offering unit trusts, equity ISAs and Stakeholder Pensions.
UCB Home Loans Corporation Ltd.
Provides specialist mortgage finance, particularly for the self-employed. One of the UK's largest centralised mortgage lenders.
Nationwide International Ltd.
Based in Douglas, Isle of Man|Douglas on the Isle of Man, Nationwide International provides a range of offshore savings accounts denominated in Euro, Pounds Sterling and US Dollar. The accounts are designed for British expatriates but are suitable for a variety of purposes.
Nationwide Mortgage Corporation Ltd.
Acquires and administers commercial mortgage portfolios acquired from third parties.
Nationwide Syndications Limited
Arranges and participates in syndicated loans to Registered Housing Associations.
Nationwide Trust Limited
Provides a complete personal loan service.
Foundation Insurance Limited
Isle of Man based captive insurer.
Nationwide Investments (No.1) Ltd.
An investment company.
Monument (Sutton) Limited
A commercial property rental company.
An investment company.
Graham Beale - Chief Executive
John Sutherland - Sales & Marketing Director
Stuart Bernau - Group Retail Director
David Rigney - Group Operations Director
Mark Rennison - Group Finance Director
Robin Bailey - Insurance & Investment Director
Matthew Carter - Mortgages & Savings Director
Fionnuala Earley - Chief Economist