Newport Retailer Wins National Credit Union Award

A Newport-based maternity wear and baby clothing retailer has received a national award for improving the financial health of its workforce.

JoJo Maman Bebe won the Payroll Partner (Third Sector) title at the Credit Unions of Wales Award in recognition of its commitment to supporting the financial welfare of its staff through a credit union partnership.

The company was nominated by Smart Money Cymru Credit Union and received the award from BBC broadcaster Jennifer Jones at a special ceremony in Cardiff Bay

It comes in recognition for developing a partnership that allows the workforce to gain access to a whole range of affordable financial schemes including payroll saving and workplace loans.

JoJo Maman Bebe said: “Working with Smart Money Cymru enables our employees who live and work in the UK to save directly from their monthly pay. 

“A fast and simple way to save, there is no need to queue up at the bank to pay in or withdraw. It’s a great way to save for those special events, such as Christmas or a holiday.

“As an employer, the Invisible Savings Scheme was easy to implement through our payroll with low administration costs, helping our employees’ with financial security, and enabling access to other benefits offered by the credit union.

“We continue to work closely with Smart Money Cymru, who support us in managing the scheme which is open to all our employees across the UK, though our Newport distribution centre has the highest uptake.”

Andrina Davies, General Manager of Smart Money Cymru Credit Union added: “Their onsite credit union ambassador strongly believes in promoting financial wellness due to her personal situation with money a few years back.

“The range of financial services offered by Smart Money Cymru is promoted by a bi-monthly attendance, information Included in induction packs to all staff across the UK along with notice board and intranet advertising.”

JoJo Maman Bebe was one of eight award winners at The Pierhead which also welcomed Jane Hutt AM, Patron of the Credit Unions of Wales who is spearheading a campaign for Welsh people to take a stand against high cost credit providers

It comes following an announcement that people in Wales are more susceptible to over-indebtedness than any other country in the UK, with 440,000 at risk of being unable to keep up with credit repayments.

According to the study by the Money Advice Service, more than one in six people in Wales are at risk of being unable to keep up with credit repayments

Michael Sheen, actor and founder of the End High Cost Credit Alliance said: “As a Patron of Credit Unions of Wales it’s an honour to support the awards in raising the profile of the great achievements made this year.

 “Fair and responsible finance that can respond to the real needs of people in communities across Wales and the rest of the UK is core to my mission with the End High Cost Credit Alliance, of which I’m proud to say Credit Unions of Wales is an important member.

“For the movement to win the battle against high cost credit, we need effective providers and that includes credit unions. So today is a great opportunity to showcase what works and to raise the profile so that more people join their local credit union. Congratulations to all of this year’s winners.”

The Credit Unions of Wales Awards were sponsored by ABCUL, Change Account, Engage and supported by the Welsh Government.

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