Our first AGM as a newly formed trustee company held its first ordinary general meeting at the grand Scott’s Hotel (then dubbed “the city home of country people”) at 444 Collins Street West on 14 August 1888. The seven-member board boasted F.E. Stewart as chairman and John Madden, LLD, as vice chairman. The other founding directors were George Fairbairn, Edward Fanning (great grandfather of former Chairman, the Hon Jeff Kennett AC), H.E.A Hodges, Robert Reid and Oliver Vial.
The Equity Trustees Executors and Agency Company Limited was established “with powers and responsibilities by a Special Act of the Victorian Parliament” in 1888. The 1988 annual report aptly notes that the reasoning reflected in the Act “remains as valid today as it was back in 1888”. And it’s still valid 30 years later. “Whereas from the uncertainty of human life and from other causes great difficulty often arises in securing the services of suitable people … a company has been formed … with the object … of affording persons … a permanent corporation … to remove much of the uncertainty and insecurity … to act as executor administrator and trustee … and as agent under power of attorney …”