University Staff Credit Society was born at the University of Western Australia in 1963. One of the vanguard was James Vallve who cooked up some ideas for a credit society when not working in the university’s chemistry department. Mr Vallve became the founding chair of University Staff Credit Society when he and his colleagues succeeded in beginning the credit union with a bond of serving university staff.

University Staff Credit Society successfully served the financial needs of WA’s academic community and it quickly gained the nickname “Unicredit”. This became so widespread that the trading name Unicredit was registered in 1985.

The February 1994 edition of Directions magazine featured a short profile of UniCredit. It included the following statistics – membership at December 1993 stood at 10,740 with assets of $36.07 million.

UniCredit Manager, Alan Hellicar, was quoted in the profile as saying:

“UniCredit’s primary bond area is the state’s four universities. In February 1994 we will open a branch office on the University of Western Australia campus giving the Society a presence on four of the six major campus sites.

Ease of account access for members has been a major concern of UniCredit, particularly when existing members graduate or leave a tertiary institution. The growth in electronic banking facilities has overcome this problem to a large degree and we now have an increasing membership off-campus retaining previously established links with the Society. Our current level of business activity indicates that 1994 will be a busy and interesting year for UniCredit”.

The concern about access to quality branch services for members, despite ever more widely accessible internet technology, detailed by Mr Hellicar in 1994 was further evidenced in a 1998 article in Directions. The article also celebrated UniCredit receiving a Subiaco Award for the redevelopment of its office in Subiaco. The building, designed by Robin Kornweibel Architects, was commended in the awards “for being highly functional and sympathetic to the streetscape through its simplicity of design and attention to detail”.

In 2014, the UniCredit Board came to the conclusion that “joining forces with another strong and equally dedicated party was the best path forward to securing a successful and sustainable future”. At a Special General Meeting held in July 2015 UniCredit members voted to merge with Teachers Mutual Bank.

From August 1 2015, UniCredit began operations as UniBank, a division of Teachers Mutual Bank Limited. UniBank serves the financial needs of staff, students and graduates of Australian universities and their families.