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DISPLAY TO DECEMBER 31, 2012

SIBOS SPECIAL REPORT Regulation still high on the agenda

+10 things

goVeRnMents need to do to ensuRe BanKing staBilitY Foreign exchange:

neWheDging STraTegieS For BanKS

award Winners inside

ChInA’S LOAn GROwTh Disappointing figures abound

STAnChART vS DBS DBS defending its deposits

BAnkS fLOCk InTO ChInA Why Malaysian banks?

ISLAmIC BAnkInG In ASIA Beating scale disadvantage

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ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 3


CONTENTS

10

CHINA BANKS’ DISAPPOINTING LOAN GROWTH DATA

FIRST 10 China banks’ disappointing loan growth data

11 3 keys to Korean banks’ resiliency against foreign currency funding risks

OPINION 14 10 things governments should do to ensure banking and financial stability

44 5 factors affecting investments attracted by capital markets

48 What to expect of the banking sector by 2020

Published quarterly on the second week of the month by Charlton Media Group Pte Ltd, 06-09 E, Maxwell House 20 Maxwell Road Singapore 069113 4 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

REGULAR

34

HERE’S HOW ISLAMIC BANKS CAN OVERCOME SCALE DISADVANTAGE

46

MORE HEDGING SOLUTIONS FOR ASIAN BANKS REVEALED

32 Big Issue 2: Why are Malaysian banks going into China?

16 People Profile: 3 goals of JP Morgan’s Lim Kiat Seng

As the new head of financial institutions sales and treasury services, Lim is planning for a back-to-basics approach

24 Big Issue 1: Can Standard

Chartered chip away at DBS’ advantage?

Find out what analysts from Standard & Poor’s, Macquarie, CIMB, and IG Markets have to say

Where there are issues, there are opportunities

46 Sector Report 2: More hedging

solutions for Asian banks revealed

As various services and products emerge across Asia and trade is settled in different currencies, we sought the insights of bankers and analysts for possible hedging solutions

34 Sector Report 1: Here’s how Islamic banks can overcome scale disadvantage

Find out more about the latest issues in Islamic finance including regulations, Shariah compliance, and the Islamic banks’ severe scale disadvantage vs conventional banks

For the latest banking news from Asia visit the website

www.asianbankingandfinance.net


ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 5


FROM THE EDITOR In this issue we give you a special report on Sibos, the world’s premier event for the financial services industry that brings more than 7,000 global banking leaders together every year.

PUBLISHER & EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Tim Charlton ASSISTANT EDITOR Jason Oliver ART DIRECTOR Jonnel Martin Herman EDITORIAL ASSISTANT Queenie Chan MEDIA ASSISTANT Daniela Gujilde

Sibos Head Kris Hendrieckx revealed what bankers can expect from the two Sibos events happening in Asia: Sibos 2012 in Osaka and Sibos 2015 in Singapore.

EDITORIAL ASSISTANT Alex Wong ADVERTISING CONTACTS Laarni Salazar-Navida lanie@charltonmediamail.com Rochelle Romero rochelle@charltonmediamail.com

We also sought the insights of three Sibos delegates attending the event this year: J.P. Morgan’s Lim Kiat Seng, Barclays’ Matt Tuck, and Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s Percy Batliwalla.

ADMINISTRATION Lovelyn Labrador accounts@charltonmediamail.com ADVERTISING advertising@charltonmedia.com EDITORIAL editorial@charltonmedia.com

These bankers expect regulation to be high on the agenda following the onerous changes brought about by regulations such as Basel III and Dodd Frank. The rise of RMB as the next global currency is another issue expected to provoke significant interest at Sibos this year. We also explore China’s still disappointing loan growth data despite the rate cuts earlier this year, and how Korean banks managed to be more resilient against foreign currency liquidity risks after the 2008-09 global financial crisis.

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The People Profile section is also introduced in this issue as we aim to give you an exclusive sneak peek into the plans of the newest senior appointments in Asia’s banking industry.

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6 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012


ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 7


News from asianbankingandfinance.net

The best of asianbankingandfinance.net Citi to launch tablet banking by 2013 MOST READ RETAIL BANKING

Maybank launches World MasterCard, targets Asia’s rich The bank eyes a 10% increase in its total card base within the first two years of the card’s launch. In a statement, Maybank announced the launch of the Maybank World MasterCard to capture a greater market share of those with annual income of SGD120,000 and above. BRANCH BANKING

ICBC sees growth in Singapore shipping China’s biggest bank intends to focus its attention on building its ship finance business in Singapore. International Commercial Bank of China intends to expand its base in Singapore after just receiving a full banking license last week to operate in Singapore. ICBC is also China’s top ship financing bank and is currently increasing its exposure to international trade. About 30% of ICBC’s sip financing business emanates from China while 70% comes from overseas.

The rise of mobile banking in Asia

According to a release, at the end of September, Citi had 1.1 million active mobile banking users – clients who use Citi Mobile to conduct their banking transactions – in the region and is adding between 60,000 to 70,000 new mobile users every month. In total, the bank sees between 12 to13 million online and

mobile log-ins every month. LENDING & CREDIT

HSBC to restructure its Islamic finance business The HSBC Group is concentrating more on Malaysia and Saudi Arabia and less on Indonesia in its Islamic finance offering to

customers. This is brought on by a strategic review of its Islamic finance business to drive growth and improve returns on investment by restructuring. ISLAMIC BANKING

ADB, IFSB ink deal to advance Islamic finance in developing countries The Asian Development Bank and the Islamic Financial Services Board have agreed to facilitate international cooperation through a signed agreement to further advance the progress of Islamic finance in common developing member countries. BRANCH BANKING

Taiwan expands banking reach in SEA

RETAIL BANKING

Citi to launch Tablet Banking by 1Q13 This follows the success of Citi Mobile that surpassed 1m active users in September 2012.

ICBC Bank in Beijing, China

Maybank launches new credit card

8 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

Taiwan’s Financial Supervisory Commission, the banking industry regulator, reports that Taiwan’s banks are expanding into Southeast Asia on a massive scale. Taiwan is in the process of signing memo-

randa of understanding with Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand to allow its banks to establish banking presence in these countries.

C

M

Y

CM

LENDING & CREDIT

New Chinese loans suffer another sharp drop Chinese banks could have lent only US$95 billion in new loans during September. This is 18% down from actual loans in August, a steep plunge that disappointed even analysts who had expected tepid loan growth. RETAIL BANKING

Hong Kong banks on their own in Basel III Hong Kong banks will have to turn to local fund-raising strategies to meet Basel III’s tougher liquidity requirements. The banks will need to focus on local strategies to raise funding as Asia’s regulators are more domestically focused.

MY

CY

CMY

K


ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 9


FIRST Chinese Banks’ New Loan Growth Comparisons

China banks’ new RMB loans in September only reached RMB623 billion which was 11% below consensus. Source: PEOC, CEIC. Bernstein Analysis

China banks’ disappointing loan growth data

China Banks - monthly RMB new loans

T

he rate cuts earlier in the year which were aimed to boost lending did not seem to work, as China banks’ new RMB loans in September only reached RMB 623 billion which was 11% below consensus. It was clear that the lowering of the minimum floor to the benchmark rate is yet to spark a change in China’s loan growth data. Loans were dragged down by declining discounted bills, and CIMB says anecdotal evidence suggest that banks have been reluctant to offer discounts to benchmark of more than 10%, possibly dampening demand for new loans. But despite the disappointing loan growth figures, analysts see a silver lining in total credit formation which increased sharply by 21% to RMB 1.45 trillion in September.

Source: The People’s Bank of China, barclays Research

WHAT THE ANALYSTS SAY CIMB: Trevor Kalcic, Analyst September’s loan data was relatively weak, in spite of rate cuts earlier in the year aimed at boosting lending. Nevertheless, total social financing remained robust, suggesting underlying demand for financing. China reported that September’s new RMB loans fell by 11% mom to Rmb623.2bn, but the supply of total credit rose to Rmb1.65tr as FX loans rose strongly and bill acceptances rebounded. China reported that new RMB loans for September was Rmb623.2bn (11% below Bloomberg consensus of Rmb700bn) vs. Rmb703.9bn in August. Year-to-date, new loans granted totaled Rmb6.72tr. This compares to the run rate of new loans for the first nine months of 2011 of Rmb5.69tr, which represented 76% of 2011’s eventual total new loans. The interest rate cuts, as well as the lowering of the minimum floor to the benchmark rate, have yet to make their mark on loan growth.

Anecdotal evidence suggest that banks have been reluctant to offer discounts to benchmark of more than 10%, possibly dampening demand for new loans. New total social financing in September was Rmb1.65tr (higher than August’s Rmb1.24tr), even as new loans fell 11% mom to make up 38% of the total. Loans still represent the largest component of total social financing, but made up the lowest proportion in 2012. Corporate bonds fell 12% mom but remained the second-largest component in total social financing at 14%. Bank acceptances (13% of total) rebounded to Rmb216bn (vs. –Rmb84bn in August) while FX loans rose to their highest level this year of Rmb176bn (11% of total). Trust loans (12% of total) and entrusted loans (9% of total) also recorded strong growth, up 72% mom and 39% mom, respectively. In another positive development, Huijin reaffirmed its support for listed banks after the completion of its current share acquisition programme.

10 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

Bernstein Research: Mike Werner, September, 11% lower than market Senior Analyst expectations (RMB 700 billion) Overall, new loan growth for and new loans extended in August the Chinese banks was RMB (RMB 704 billion). 623 billion, 11% lower than the Excluding the impact of RMB 700 billion the market was discounted bills, new loan growth expecting and the RMB 704 billion for September was RMB 840 of new loan growth in August. billion, 33% higher than the Despite the weak headline loan monthly average of new loans (exgrowth figure, total credit formation bills) during the first eight months was up sharply in September due to of 2012. a combination of seasonally strong Month-over-month, September issuance of bank acceptance bills 2012 new loans were down 11% as well as robust levels of corporate from August figures. But excluding debt, trust loans and FX loans. the impact of discounted bills, total Excluding the short-term loans were up 47% MoM and 71% bank acceptance bills, total credit YoY. formation was RMB 1.45 trillion, The sharp decline in discounted 21% higher than the year-to-date bills is a result of a regulatory monthly average. crackdown on off-balance sheet RMB loan growth accounted for lending as the banks were booking just 43% of total credit formation credit exposures off-balance sheet in September, the lowest level via the use of banker acceptances since late-2009 and well below and other off balance sheet the 2010-current average of 65%. mechanisms. So while headline loan figures The continuous game of cat-andare disappointing, total credit mouse between the Chinese banks formation is accelerating. and the regulators will continue at Chinese banks extended new least HSBC another couple rounds. loans of RMB 623 billion in Source: HK Censtatd, Source: Fitch, RBI


FIRST currency deposits, by providing depositors and banks with tax or other financial incentives. “Moreover, by June 2012, the banks had secured committed credit lines totaling $2.5 billion, which is equivalent to 2.3% of their total foreign currency debt. In contrast, only one of the banks -- Shinhan -- had a committed credit line of $0.5 billion at end-2009.”

3 keys to Korean banks’ resiliency against foreign currency funding risks

A

fter the 2008-09 global financial crisis, Korean banks are now back on track and are found to be more resilient against foreign currency liquidity stress than ever before. That is despite various reports of Korean banks’ falling profits and cautious lending, not to mention anomalies whereby nine major South Korean banks were investigated by the Fair Trade Commission on suspicion of colluding to fix the interest rates on certificates of deposit. Young Il Choi, vice president - senior credit officer at Moody’s Investors Service, reckons that since 2009, the banks have taken numerous measures to improve their foreign currency funding and liquidity profiles, mainly through terming out debt maturities, diversifying their sources of debt, and increasing their liquidity buffers.

currency assets increasing by 11.9% on an annualized basis in 1H 2012,” he adds. Diversified debt sources The banks’ debt structures in terms of currency and investor base have also been diversified to avoid overly relying on investors in the United States and Europe. “Consequently, the proportion of their foreign currency debt in currencies other than US dollars, euro and yen increased to 15.6% at 1H 2012 from 11.2% at end-2009. By contrast, their total euro debt fell to 5.5% from 11.2% over the same period,” says Young.

Increased liquidity buffers Korean banks have also boosted their liquidity buffers to mitigate against refinancing risks related to a potential disruption in the international capital markets. In 1H 2012, the total foreign Debt maturities currency cash and deposit assets held According to Young, Korean banks by the largest seven domestic banks have improved their debt maturity increased and the ratio of these assets profiles by refinancing short-term to their total foreign currency debt debt with long-term debt. Among the improved to 11% at end-June from 8% seven largest banks in terms of foreign at end-2009, notes Young. currency assets, the ratio of their In 1H 2012, the seven major banks’ short-term foreign currency debt to foreign currency deposits grew by total foreign currency debt improved 21.7% on an annualized basis. Young to 51% at the end of June, from 56% at expects this trend to continue, as the end-2011. regulators implement their long-term “This was despite total foreign strategy to increase the banks’ foreign

They have a Stable Outlook for Korea’s banks and closely monitoring key developments in Korea.

All’s well that ends well Although the Korean banking system is still not immune to foreign currency funding risks compared to its peers because the banks still have a structural reliance on wholesale funding. Young reckons that clear improvements have been made that mitigate that risk. In fact, the overall banking system’s foreign currency loan-to-deposit ratio was 315% as of June 2012. Mark Young, managing director and head of Asia Pacific financial institutions at Fitch Ratings, notes that they have a Stable Outlook for Korea’s banks and are closely monitoring key developments in Korea. He reveals that the banking system has an adequate capitalization with an FCC ratio of 12.2% at end-2011 and no significant change in 1H12. The banks also have an acceptable profitability with underlying ROA of about 0.6% in 1H12. “Moreover, the funding/liquidity has improved noticeably since 2008. There is a rise in consumer protection cases which has increased the legal risks for the banks, but it is difficult to ascertain the financial impact at this stage. Lastly, we take prudent lending or slow loan growth as positive in general given the more challenging environment,” adds Young.

Proportion of short-term FC Debt to Total FC Debt

Source: Hana bank, KDS, KES, KEXIM, Kookmin Bank, Shinhan Bank and Woori Bank

ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 11


SIBOS FEATURE

What delegates expect of Sibos in Osaka SWIFT anticipates more delegates in Osaka than past-Sibos events in the region. Find out what J.P. Morgan, Barclays, and Bank of America Merrill Lynch have to say. Deemed as the world’s premier event for the financial services industry organized by SWIFT, Sibos now goes to Osaka, one of the rising economic powerhouses in Asia. Sibos is by far the only event that has the power to draw more than 7,000 influential leaders and top decision makers from financial institutions, market infrastructures, multinational corporations and technology partners. Last year, Sibos was held in Toronto - the largest Sibos in the Americas to date with 7,600 participants. The year 2010 marked the largest Sibos to date with nearly 9,000 participants. Sibos last took place in Asia in 2009 where we saw the event’s largest ever showing in Asia Pacific held in Hong Kong. Sibos in Osaka Asian Banking and Finance recently talked to Sibos Head Kris Hendrieckx, and he assured that with exhibition space completely sold out, Sibos in Osaka this year will definitely be larger than Sibos in Hong Kong. So how are delegate numbers looking for Sibos in Osaka this year? Hendrieckx notes they expect more delegates than past-Sibos events in the region - 5,700 in Sydney in 2006 and the 5,800 in Hong Kong. “From our experience and surveys carried out while at Sibos, we are seeing that the pull-factor for Sibos seems to be the wealth

of networking opportunities that one can partake in during the conference,” he adds. The conference program in Japan has more specialty streams. Delegates can expect two-day passess for the Technology forum, Corporate forum, and Compliance forum. “This is the first time Sibos has been held in Japan and I think we will get a lot of senior people attending from the local industry which we haven’t had before. The fact that there will be a lot more Japanese delegates coming along is a huge pull factor for the region. We are also seeing a lot more interest coming from Korea and China,” says Hendrieckx. Back in Asia by 2015 Sibos will be back in Singapore in 2015. Hendrieckx estimates the economical impact of hosting it in the Lion-city will be at least SGD 100 million which is really positive news for Singapore. “We chose Singapore for 2015 because we felt that we’ve been away too long from one of our key Asia Pacific markets. The last Sibos that was hosted here was in 2003 and since then, a lot has changed in Singapore,” reckons Hendrieckx. With Sibos being a place where banks want to showcase their best, Asian Banking and Finance sought the insights of some exhibitors for this year’s Sibos. Read on to find out what JP Morgan, Barclays, and Bank of America Merrill Lynch have to say.

T

he world in which we do business is evolving at an increasingly fast rate, fuelled by globalization, new regulations and advancements in technology. As the world’s banks re-examine their business models and enhance their capabilities, three considerations remain top of mind.

LIM KIAT SENG Head of Financial Institutions Sales, Treasury Services J.P. Morgan

Technology is challenging traditional business models and creating new entry points for competitors.

Globalization A decade ago, the concept of banking globalization meant expansion into different countries. Whilst that still holds true, in today’s complex world, it also involves tapping into a global workforce, adopting channel and delivery strategies from different markets as well as considering the emergence of new financial services centres. At J.P. Morgan, our global platform, global service model and local expertise allow our financial institution (FI) clients to have a consistent experience through a suite of solutions in the payments clearing space, for example, which straddles across FIs, Non-Bank Financial Institutions (NBFIs) and Corporates, comprising both high-value and low-value payments, tailored to the requirements of our clients to deliver an end-toend, integrated solution. With increased regulatory oversight, financial institutions have been adopting new processes and benchmarks and further enhancing their operations

to manage risk and compliance complexities. J.P. Morgan remains committed to the FI business and continues to work with our clients and represent their interests through consistent engagement on the implications of new regulations. For example, we have invested heavily in our payments processing platforms to ensure payments are automated. Technology Technology is challenging traditional business models and creating new entry points for competitors. It is therefore critical to remain at the forefront of technology in order to deliver the most relevant solutions and operational excellence to our clients. Apart from innovative solutions, clients also demand up-to-the-minute reporting of cash positions, payment flows and status updates on trade flows, including intelligent data warehousing. It is imperative that institutions focus on finding the right banking partners to ensure they can work together to provide seamless integration of these critical functions. At J.P. Morgan, we build on our existing suite of products and services to be at the forefront of providing cut-through solutions. At the end of the day, we want to understand our client’s needs better and offer end-to-end bespoke solutions that best suit their growth ambitions.


SIBOS FEATURE

S

ibos 2012 is timely in the truest sense of the word. As delegates descend on Osaka, numerous external factors are confronting both the global economy and the international financial services sector. However, we believe that with any challenge comes opportunity and Sibos is the perfect forum for the industry to come together and move forward collectively in this environment. Global framework A more robust global regulatory framework and the perennial drive to reduce costs in light of tough economic conditions are forcing banks to re-think their products and reassess market strategies. Changing PERCY BATLIWALLA regulations have forced banks to focus on core Head of Sales, Global competencies where legacy businesses being shed to generate a leaner, fitter organization. Treasury Solutions, Given the impact of this broad trend, we anticiAsia Pacific, Bank of America pate that the influence of regulations on both prodMerrill Lynch uct development as also partnerships and hence we anticipate collaboration between banks as well as with regulators to be debated at Sibos. However, no conversation on transaction banking can exist without acknowledging the changing face of competition in the banking space. As client At Sibos, we expect to demands evolve, in part driven by the increased receive further clarity level of sophistication of clients in Asia, there has been a major shift in financial institutions buying on the methodology behavior from reciprocity to value. reassessment by Competition is forcing banks to deliver even ratings agencies .

S

ibos provides a great opportunity for the industry to come together to discuss the key challenges and opportunities we are all facing today. It plays a crucial role in providing a forum to continue to build and cement trusted partnerships, alongside an opportunity for focus on thought leadership and industry issues, ensuring we continuously challenge ourselves and our peers. We expect a number of themes to emerge at this years’ conference, with regulation, technology and new market opportunities being key. Shifting trade flows Whilst many markets around the world are still feeling the effects of the financial crisis, others are experiencing growth with a number of opportunities and new relationships emerging. Cash and trade flows have been shifting for some time now, with Asia, the Middle East, LATAM and Africa becoming increasingly important markets as originators and beneficiaries. As banks look to service their customers outside of the home and regional markets, they are increasingly looking to partner with relationship banks who can help them. On a practical level, partnership can facilitate global trade flows and ease customers’ expansion into new markets by guiding them through local business processes. At a higher level, greater bank

more efficient solutions and to further push the boundaries of product innovation to heighten the value proposition. Sibos will showcase this in full force. Intra-Asia trade Another aspect that we expect will be at the forefront of discussions with and between banks in Asia is the changing patterns of trade and the increased importance of intra-Asia trade and payments resulting in shift in business models of financial institutions and potential solutions that they can provide to their clients to enhance the efficiencies of these flows. At Sibos, we expect to receive further clarity on the methodology reassessment by ratings agencies and re-ratings of banks at proper levels. We also look forward to hearing how global treasurers are executing innovative structures to balance risk-return in this environment and how they are deploying regional structures in Asia to offer more visibility, accountability and flexibility across their organizations. Closer to home, the rise of the RMB as the next global currency is another area which will arouse significant interest at Sibos 2012. Although the RMB internationalization program is an entrenched reality, banks are still not doing enough to recognize this reality and design bespoke products around the RMB.

collaboration can create a stronger, more cohesive industry voice better-placed to engage in bank-regulator dialogue. Such an approach can also facilitate inter-bank communication, which allows for a deeper understanding of end-client needs across the globe. A flood of change Regulation continues to be high on the agenda. We are seeing a flood of regulatory change which is already impacting the end consumer, with regulations such as Basel III and Dodd Frank placing considerable burden on banks in terms of capital, systems and infrastructure. The key however is for banks and regulators to work together to find solutions and to ensure that the change required has the desired effect. Further change needed is around technology. Financial institutions and corporates alike need to keep pace with changing consumer behaviour and the increasing use of social media sites and mobile phone applications (Social-Local-Mobile). Banks must understand what this means for their clients in different segments and develop technologies that facilitate these interactions in an easy, fast, simple and affordable way. Barclays Pingit for example is a solution that takes these trends and seeks to make the lives easier for consumers interacting with each other and crucially their bank.

MATT TUCK Global Head of Financial Institutions Barclays

We are seeing a flood of regulatory change which is already impacting the end consumer


OPINION

MICHAEL LAFFERTY

10 things governments should do to ensure banking and financial stability

BY MICHAEL LAFFERTY Founder, Lafferty Group

A number of countries in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Latin America have ‘come in from the cold’ in recent years as a result of a pent-up desire for political and societal renewal. A major issue for the new rulers running countries that are now much more open to the outside world is to consider how best to adapt banks and financial firms to systemic political change. It is fair to say that putting banking and financial systems on to a new footing is probably not the first priority for governments wishing to prevent war and hardship, assure populations of basic necessities and improve the overall quality of life. The 10 precepts On the other hand, it should not be too far down the ranking list either. Here are 10 precepts that governments in such countries would do well to emulate if they wish to ensure stability and widen perspectives in the financial as well as the political field. 1. Avoid the Anglo-American universal banking model, combining retail banking and securities activities. It is now under attack in Western Europe and North America and will probably be dismantled over the next few years. 2. In a similar way, do not allow banks and insurers to merge. Fundamentally, banking, securities and insurance are separate industries and should remain so. 3. Instead, introduce a system of specialist bank licences - some for retail banking, some for corporate banking and some for microfinance institutions. This has the advantage of simplicity and will be much easier to supervise. It should apply to domestic and foreign banks alike. 4. Do not permit a concentrated banking system, where perhaps a handful of giant banks dominate the market - as they do in many emerging economies. Competition is good! 5. Foster a mixed retail banking system - with many smaller privately-owned banks, mutual cooperatives/credit unions and a postal bank operating through the post office. Even small and medium-sized countries can aspire to have as many such community-based retail banks as possible. Economies of scale can be achieved in a different way given rapid 14 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

advances in technology, the adoption of social networks and so on. 6. Require that bank executives need to be professionally qualified through approved and tested academic programmes. 7. Build a strong supervision system using best practice from many countries around the world. 8. Tackle potentially destabilising ‘cash mountains’ by introducing electronic payment card systems as soon as possible. In addition to internationally-accepted credit and debit cards, urgent priority should be given to the introduction of prepaid card systems. These should be ‘open loop’ - with cards that can be used to make payments on a general basis. 9. Do everything possible to prevent a repeat of the Czech voucher scam, where millions of people lost their savings in the wake of the collapse of the Iron Curtain. 10. Establish a Consumer Financial Education Council and encourage it to work with the media, schools and employers to improve consumers’ understanding of financial matters.

Aim for banking stability


ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 15


PEOPLE PROFILE

3 goals of JP Morgan’s Lim Kiat Seng As the new head of financial institutions - sales and treasury services, Lim is planning for a back-to-basics approach.

Name: Lim Kiat Seng Bank: J.P. Morgan Chase Job Title: Head of Financial Institutions – Sales, Treasury Services Age: 45 ABF: What makes you excited about your new position? Transaction banking is maturing fast in Asia, with companies ramping up their sophistication as they integrate further into the global economy. In line with this, the demand for transaction banking solutions has been growing at an incredible pace. Bigger and stronger Asian banks have emerged with greater aspirations in their business objectives. The volume of intra-regional banking activity has also picked up tremendously and has grown larger than in most other regions of the world. It is therefore a great time to be joining J.P. Morgan at a time of change and evolution in the industry. Banks are moving towards consolidation of their service providers for a variety of reasons which range from risk mitigation through gaining operational efficiencies through consistent service delivery. In today’s increasingly competitive business environment, clients are demanding both cash management and trade finance solutions. I’m very excited that my role enables me to work across both these areas

with bank and non-bank financial institution clients to help them meet their goals. I’m looking forward to leading our financial institutions franchise, to bring it to new heights and bring the very best solutions to clients in Asia Pacific.

ABF: What are your key business philosophies? Integrity in all our dealings with clients. Never to put the firm and our clients’ business at risk through the products and services offered by our Treasury Services.

ABF: What three goals are you focused on? From my perspective, I’m focused on three key priorities for our clients – understanding their requirements/ needs, finding solutions and adding value to their broader business objectives.

ABF: What previous positions prepared you for this one and how? To date, my career has been focused on transaction banking. I spent the last 12 years in Global Transaction Banking with Deutsche Bank, most recently as co-Head of Cash Management, Financial Institutions, Asia Pacific, with co-responsibility for financial institutions cash management sales in the region. Prior to Deutsche Bank, I’ve been fortunate enough to have held a variety of managerial roles spanning both cash management and trade finance in Singapore, including Banco do Brasil S.A., Union Bank of California, N.A., Royal Bank of Canada and OCBC Bank. I believe this gives me a great background in terms of understanding today’s business issues, clients’ needs and how best to help meet those needs.

ABF: What will you do differently in this position? Building on J.P. Morgan’s existing suite of products and services, my goal is to always be at the forefront of providing innovative, cut-through solutions that empower our clients to succeed. I’m going to focus on understanding our client’s needs better and serve as a bridge to be able to offer end-to-end solutions which best suit their growth phase. ABF: What changes are you planning for? Currently, I’m planning for a back-to-basics approach where we re-emphasize that clients are at the centre of everything that we do, every single day. Embedding ourselves and acting as a consultative partner to them, discussing global best practices, suggesting solutions to challenges and providing insight into specific tools that can help address their requirements. This means educating our clients on the benefits of better visibility, control and efficiency, and showing them how they can re-formulate their business operations today to ensure that they’re appropriately positioned for growth tomorrow. I’m also going to re-evaluate our core competencies and ensure that we deliver against our promises and strengthen our capabilities in both cash management and trade.

I’m looking forward to leading our financial institutions franchise, to bring it new heights and bring the very best solutions to clients in Asia Pacific.

ABF: What challenges are you looking for? Our clients are increasingly concerned with growing their businesses, improving efficiency, managing risks and navigating an ever more challenging regulatory environment and industry landscape. The challenge for partners like us is to keep costs down, while providing an appropriate level of service for the growing ambitions of our clients. The way we are providing services is also evolving – from single product decisions to solution bundles that address underlying client concerns. In my mind, although incredibly challenging, it is a tremendously exciting time to be here, especially in a company with such a strong heritage in the region.


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ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 17


TAIWAN DOMESTIC TECHNOLOGY & OPERATIONS BANK OF THE YEAR TAISHIN BANK

Taishin Bank still a prime mover in Taiwan

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aishin Bank was inaugurated in March 1992, and merged with Dah An Bank via share swap for the establishment of Taishin Financial Holding in 2002. Currently, Taishin Bank has 101 units in major cities in Taiwan and overseas. Taishin’s outstanding track record Taishin has built an intensive banking franchise and maintains the leading position in Taiwan with excellent performance in profitability with the aid of our professionals, innovative products, technologies, and risk control to provide customers with superior financial services. Our bank’s services, such as wealth management, credit cards, consumer finance, structured finance, cash management and factoring business remain the leading position in  Taiwan with stable profit growth. In business performance, pre-tax income increased by Tim Charlton with Joseph Jao, President of Taishin Financial Holdings 17.3% YoY and an ROE of 15% in the first unique opportunity to personalize his/her integrated cash payment and collection half of 2012. Furthermore, Taishin has superior credit card in line with his current needs, services for customers by excellent cash asset quality to other domestic banks preferred reward schemes, and even management and e-Banking platform. with 0.16% NPL ratio and 652% coverage desired card designations. This program Moreover, Taishin keeps enhancing the ratio. Our growth is coupled with a drive represented a brilliant performance in operation efficiency as a result of Single relevant business growth. Sign-On effect reached via seamless of innovative enhancements There are more than 135,000 interface arrangement among various to our products and services, “Taishin is the first new applications since we independent operation systems. and that is the primary factor bank in Taiwan to for Taishin Bank to win 2012 introduce Visa Money launched this product in Oct. Taiwan Domestic Technology Transfer service and 2011, and per-card spending Future plans Taishin will continue to focus on & Operations Bank of the Year, has a leading position increased by 19% YoY in June bolstering core strategies of segment Credit Card Initiative of the in Taiwan’s UnionPay 2012. product innovation, Taishin is the first bank management, market. ” Year and the Domestic Retail in  Taiwan  to introduce Visa channel optimization, risk management Bank of the Year in Taiwan in Money Transfer (VMT) and operation efficiency, in the hope the Asian Banking & Finance service and has a leading position in of upgrading service quality and Awards. productivity, so as to strengthen its Taiwan’s UnionPay market. In 2012, Taishin has joined Visa financial competitiveness. Taishin as a prime mover Taishin is confident it will continue The Unified Facility Risk Management International to offer this VMT service System made Taishin the first bank by internet banking platform or Taishin to excel to win customer’s reliance and in Taiwan to consolidate facility products ATMs to provide customers a quicker, recognition with our professional services into one platform. It provides a complete, cheaper, and more secure service of small in Asia. global and centralized view of the facility funds transfers. As a reliable partner, Taishin also offers products of our clients. Moreover, it CONTACT supports multiple currencies and can be complete Wholesale Banking products to Taishin International Bank its clients. It integrates several financial applied to any of our overseas branches. 23F, No. 118, Sec. 4, Ren-ai Road, Taishin is the first bank to pioneer a products under the financial holding Taipei 106, Taiwan scheme where the value of the credit card company system, for example, deposits, 886-2-5576-2306 is co-created by the customers and issuers. remittance, trade finance, loans, securities, 931682@taishinbank.com.tw Taishin’s iCreditCard breaks the norm that financial products, cash management, www.taishinholdings.com.tw; customers are only able to settle with what trust, etc., so as to offer one-stop shopping www.taishinbank.com.tw the bank offers as it gives customers an for clients. Taisihin also provides 18 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012


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aishin Bank was inaugurated in March, 1992, and merged with Dah An Bank via share swap for the establishment of Taishin Financial Holding Co., Ltd. in 2002. To lower operating costs and boost operating efficiency, Taishin Bank acquired Taishin Bills Finance in 2011. Taishin Bank has set up 101 units in major cities in Taiwan and overseas.

Taishin’ outstanding track record Taishin has built an intensive banking franchise and maintains the leading position in Taiwan with excellent performance in profitability with the aid of our professionals, innovative products, technologies, and risk control to provide customers with superior financial services. Our Bank’s services, such as wealth management, credit cards, consumer finance, structured finance, cash management and factoring business remain the leading position in Taiwan with stable profit growth. In business performance, pre-tax income increased by 17.3% YOY and an ROE of 15% in 2012 H1. Furthermore, Taishin has surpassed other domestic banks in NPL ratio of 0.16% while coverage ratio jumped to 651.8%, representing great asset quality in the market. Our growth is coupled with a drive of innovative enhancements to our products and services, and that is the primary factor for Taishin Bank to win 2012 Taiwan Domestic Technology & Operations Bank of the Year, Credit Card Initiative of the Year and the Domestic Retail Bank of the Year in Taiwan in the Asian Banking & Finance awards. Taishin as a prime mover The Unified Facility Risk Management System (UFRMS) made Taishin the first bank in Taiwan to consolidate facility products into one platform. It provides a complete, global and centralized view of the facility products of our clients. Moreover, it supports multiple currencies and can be applied to any of our overseas branches. Taishin is the first bank to pioneer a scheme where the value of the credit card is co-created by the customers and issuers. Taishin’s iCreditCard breaks the norm that customers are only able to settle with what the bank offers as it gives customers an unique opportunity to personalize his/her credit card in line with his current needs, preferred reward schemes, and even desired card designations. This program represented a brilliant performance in relevant business growth. There are more than 135,000 new applications since we launched this product in Oct. 2011, and per-card spending increased by 19% YOY in June 2012. Taishin is the first bank in Taiwan to introduce Visa Money Transfer (VMT) service and has a leading position in Taiwan’s UnionPay market. In 2012, Taishin has joined Visa International to offer this VMT service by internet banking platform or Taishin ATMs to provide customers a quicker, cheaper, and more secure service of small funds transfers. Taishin is in cooperation with China UnionPay and offers more than 7,000 merchants which could accept UnionPay card and ranked No.2 in volumes of UnionPay card acquiring. Besides, Taishin also provides multiple UnionPay card services such as emergency cash advance and ATM cash withdrawal. Taishin remains committed to enhancing strategic products and capabilities, including wealth management, credit cards, consumer lending products and trusts, so that we can maintain our leading position in market. In addition, we are striving to develop differentiated products and services, adopting new technology to expand channel platform, strengthening operation management, to provide customers with convenient, secure and superior financial services. Future plans Taishin will continue to focus on bolstering core strategies of segment management, product innovation, channel optimization, risk management and operation efficiency, in the hope of upgrading service quality and productivity, so as to strengthen its financial competitiveness. Taishin is confident it will continue to exceed financial targets, resulting in a steady profit growth, so as to win customer’s reliance and recognition with our professional services in Asia.

ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 19


DOMESTIC FINANCE COMPANY OF THE YEAR - SINGAPORE HONG LEONG FINANCE LIMITED

Hong Leong Finance lives up to its 50-year legacy

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Whether it is a business entity striving to expand its company or an individual wishing to build a secure financial future, HLF will endeavour to cater to its every need. In the SME front, HLF supported SME development events and government initiatives such as the SCCCI “SMEs Conference”, the Spring’s “Singapore Customer-Centric Initiative Symposium”, the first World Entrepreneurship Forum held in Asia and the IDA’s “Project-i” to promote business makeover through information technology. HLF has also continued business growth in the mortgage loans segment. According to HLF President, Mr Ian Macdonald, “The increase was attained by launching new and relevant HDB, private and commercial property loan packages to meet growing market needs, coupled with strong support provided principally to small and mid-size property developers in catering to their project financing requirements.  The portfolio is expanded carefully based Helping SMEs HLF is the financial services arm of the on prudent assessment of mortgagors’ Hong Leong Group Singapore that offers repayment ability.” As an established luxury car financier, an extensive suite of financial products and services, spanning from deposits and savings, HLF joins the very select ranks of Porsche’s global partners.  The exclusive corporate and consumer loans partnership of Porsche to government assistance Financial Services in Singapore programmes for SMEs. “With its goal to help It was the only finance customers in attaining – a first in the Porsche Asia company in Singapore to offer their financial goals, Pacific region, offers an exclusive suite of financing chequeing account services to HLF continuously corporate customers through develop and innovate schemes to support the sales of Porsche car. the Business Current Account customer-centric launched in 2007. products and services All good things ahead With its strong commitment to serve them.” HLF’s profit after tax towards the SMEs, HLF was attributable to shareholders for twice conferred the “Friends of Enterprise” award by the Spirit of Enterprise. the year ended 31 December 2011 amounted The company also launched SME Centre to $99.8 million, equivalent to 22.7 cents per @ Branches to expand its footprint in the share. Domestic customers drove loans and business community. With six centres across advances to rise by 18.4% to $7.54 billion. The Company continued to maintain a the north, south, east, west and central zones of Singapore, HLF stays close to the healthy customer deposits base which stood community and serve by listening to their at $7.76 billion as at 31 December 2011, and there are no bank borrowings outstanding. requests.  At the end of the financial year, its shareholders’ funds totalled $1.60 billion, A diverse portfolio HLF remains grounded in its aspiration to equivalent to $3.63 per share. HLF aims to leverage on this strong generously contributing to various business sectors in Singapore as well as individuals. financial performance and strengthen fter more than 50 years of serving the Singapore community with excellence, Hong Leong Finance has grown from a small and medium enterprise into the largest finance company with 28 branches and 6 SME centres across Singapore. With its goal to help customers in attaining their financial goals, HLF continuously develop and innovate customer-centric products and services to serve them. HLF was named the Domestic Finance Company of the Year at this year’s Asian Banking & Finance Retail Banking Awards, an award in recognition of HLF’s longstanding leadership and commitment to excellence and innovation.   This is its third prestigious accolade. In 2007 and 2011, HLF   was also bestowed the Asia Finance Company of the Year and Singapore Finance Company of the Year, respectively.

20 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

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Ian Macdonald, President, Hong Leong Finance

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its relevance to its customers in helping them amid an increasingly challenging environment. As a SME leader, HLF will continue to invest financially and strategically by opening more SME Centres @ Branches to bring value to the SME community, reveals Mr Macdonald. “We recently received approval from the Singapore Exchange to act as a full sponsor on Catalist, the first domestic finance company to achieve the status.”  “This will enable us to assist SMEs wishing to raise capital on this board and offer them advisory services post listing.  This latest service will also add another income stream to the business,” he adds.

CONTACT Hong Leong Finance Ltd 16 Raffles Quay #01-05 Hong Leong Building Singapore 048581 Tel: 6415 9433 Fax: 6324 6716 customerservice@hlf.com.sg www.hlf.com.sg

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DOMESTIC FINANCE COMPANY OF THE YEAR

2012

SINGAPORE FINANCE COMPANY OF THE YEAR

ASIA FINANCE COMPANY OF THE YEAR

2011

2007

Closer to you. Closer to our aspirations.

HONG LEONG FINANCE CONFERRED DOMESTIC FINANCE COMPANY OF THE YEAR 2012

If thereʼs anything that sets us apart, it is our personal touch and adaptability to our customersʼ evolving needs. This is why today we are Singaporeʼs largest finance company with a network of 28 branches island-wide. We have also rolled out SME Centre@Branches to bring us closer to the business community. All these and more have culminated in your continued patronage as well as this prestigious recognition from the Asian Banking and Finance Retail Banking Awards. This is our second consecutive win since the award was launched in 2007 and we will continue to embrace a holistic customer-centric culture to serve you better.

Mr Kwek Leng Beng Chairman and Managing Director

Attractive HDB Home Loans

Hassle-free Car Loans

Tailored SME Solutions

Easy-access SME Centres

CORPORATE FINANCE - Catalist Full Sponsor • Equity Fund Raising • Corporate Advisory DEPOSITS - Business Current Account • Fixed Deposits • Savings Accounts

For more information on our services, visit any of our branches, call 1800-3388 338 or log on to www.hlf.com.sg Deposit Insurance Scheme Singapore dollar deposits of non-bank depositors are insured by the Singapore Deposit Insurance Corporation, for up to S$50,000 in aggregate per depositor per Scheme member by law. ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 21

(0473) 09/12 Co. Reg. No. 196100003D

OUR COMPREHENSIVE RANGE OF SERVICES INCLUDES: SME LOANS - Commercial/Industrial Property Loan • Development Loan • Equipment Financing • Factoring/Accounts Receivable Financing • Loan Insurance Scheme • Local Enterprise Finance Scheme • Medical Asset Financing • Revolving Working Capital Finance • Trade Finance PERSONAL LOANS - Car Loan • HDB Home Loan • Private Housing Loan • Share Financing


DOMESTIC FINANCE COMPANY OF THE YEAR - HONG KONG PRIMECREDIT LIMITED

PrimeCredit revamps its branding icon

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his year, PrimeCredit has again been named the Domestic Finance Company of the Year by the Asian Banking and Finance Retail Banking Awards. PrimeCredit has been holding the title for two consecutive years now, and it is indeed a win well-deserved. PrimeCredit, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Standard Chartered Bank, started in 1977 in Hong Kong. Since the establishment of PrimeCredit Twin Brothers in 2006, the company has been growing by leaps and bounds in Hong Kong’s personal loan sector. To maintain its position as one of the leading players in the industry, PrimeCredit needs to extend its offerings from personal loans to other financial products, including credit card & mortgage. An integrated branding advertising campaign which was launched in May 2012 has made the company’s effort to widen its product range even more phenomenal. The extensive campaign delivered outstanding brand performances and record-breaking business results.

Susanna Liew , CEO of PrimeCredit Limited

The next stage of the campaign birthed the other 3 versions of Product TVC with product differentiations to support New branding strategy In an effort to greatly increase market the brand positioning. The TVC series share, the campaign transformed are humorous and fun to watch while the storyline hits the target PrimeCredit’s icon from audiences’ heart, speaking twin brothers to a team of out their financial needs. brothers which successfully “To maintain its PrimeCredit also engaged delivered the message of a position as one of the wider range of products & leading players in the in above-the-line advertising services that PrimeCredit is industry, PrimeCredit through an augmented offering and created more extends its offerings reality game at a high traffic station where business opportunities to from personal loans to subway PrimeCredit. other financial prod- winners were given a limited A teaser phase inviting a ucts, including credit edition set of PrimeCredit Brothers’ Pens, helping to Hong Kong famous movie card & mortgage.” promote the brand and build director to recruit New up a longer relationship with PrimeCredit Brothers had created a big impact to the market creating the consumers. A roadshow of the real brothers on the discussion on whether the existing brothers were going to be replaced and street and facebook updates on activities set a good platform for the official launch of the new PrimeCredit Brothers’ Team were also executed. of the New Brothers’ Team. Immediately after the teaser, the company released three versions of Outstanding results branding television commercials (TVC) The extensive campaign brought introducing the new PrimeCredit outstanding results as PrimeCredit leads Brothers’ Team to build up the brand the industry’s players with highest firstpositioning of “Make it Happen for You”. mentioned top-of-mind awareness and

22 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

overall brand awareness, according to a Post-campaign Research conducted by Ipsos. For Ad Awareness, PrimeCredit also leads the industry with highest firstmentioned top-of-mind awareness and overall ad awareness. A total of 86% of consumers liked the campaign while 84.1% rated the campaign at 7 or above out of a 10-point scale, according to an internal survey of PrimeCredit. Comparing business performance (on daily average) in pre- (Apr 2012) and post -campaign (mid-May – Jun, 2012) period, all products received overwhelming results with numbers of breakthrough in business records.

CONTACT PrimeCredit Limited Tel: +852-2112 2999 Email: enquiry@primecredit.com Website: www.primecredit.com


ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 23


BIG ISSUE 1

Can Standard Chartered chip away at DBS’ advantage? Find out what analysts from Standard & Poor’s, Macquarie, CIMB, and IG Markets have to say.

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fter DBS acquired POSB in 1998, the bank has grown to be the king of savings deposits with the largest S$ deposit base in Singapore. DBS’ advantage here lies in the POSB franchise that it acquired in 1998. This gave it a unique base of Singaporean retail deposit customers who use the accounts for items like spending needs, bill paying, gyro arrangements, and payroll. Instead of resting on its laurels, DBS still strives to increase deposit stickiness. But what role do foreign banks play in DBS’ effort to defend its savings deposits advantage? CIMB analyst Kenneth Ng thinks aggressive foreign banks like Standard Chartered could slowly chip away at DBS’ savings deposit advantage. “We think that Standard Chartered has been very active in capturing savings deposits through attractive interest rates at 1.88% per annum, circumventing its small ATM network via Internet transactions,” he reckons. 24 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

“DBS’ advantage here lies in the POSB franchise that it acquired in 1998.”

Justin Harper, market strategist at IG Markets, warns that only time will tell if Standard Chartered manages to poach its rivals’ customers. He believes having a foreign player like Standard Chartered offering such an account will hopefully provoke DBS and other local banks to improve their own offerings. Standard Chartered, notes Harper, has put the cat among the pigeons in aggressively targeting savers which a high interest account. This should be good news for savers in Singapore who have had to suffer very low rates of interest on savings accounts for many years. “They can no longer rest on their laurels now they have tough competition and the threat of customers leaving them. I think the likes of DBS have no option but to improve the interest rates its pays on savings accounts,” says Harper. Ivan Tan, Standard & Poor’s director of financial services ratings, concurs as he believes local banks will also continue to improve their service levels and product offerings

to maintain their market share of deposits. However, Tan reckons that though foreign banks with a smaller presence might compete on price to attract deposits, the resultant higher funding costs from such a strategy will exert downward pressure on margins and profitability. Harper also notes there is a huge amount of inertia among banking customers and hence, few can be bothered to change banks, even if the rates are much higher. Tan is confident that DBS will continue to maintain above average funding profiles, underpinned by its established franchise and large physical network of branches and ATMs. This advantage is reflected in a significantly larger Singapore dollar deposit base vis-a-vis the foreign banks. “The larger foreign banks, particularly those with Qualifying Full Bank licences, have leveraged on their competitive advantage to attract deposits through their international connectivity, trade finance capacity, franchise and wealth management services,” adds Tan. On the other hand, Macquarie Securities senior analyst Matthew Smith reckons Standard Chartered is not well positioned to compete with DBS for these deposits, which are very low cost or almost free and therefore very profitable for a bank. Smith notes that POSB gave DBS a unique base of Singaporean retail deposit customers who use the accounts for items like spending needs, bill paying, gyro arrangements, and payroll. They tend to stick around for decades, if not life, because it’s easy to use. “It helps that POSB ATMs are nearly ubiquitous here, which is not true for the foreign banks,” he adds. Standard Chartered won’t pick up this kind of low-cost deposit base, says Smith, because it tends to be very sticky to POSB and also because their branch network and ATM network pales in comparison to DBS’s, at least in Singapore. “For Standard Chartered to boost its retail deposits, it has to pay more for fixed deposits. This is less economically attractive for a bank, and although DBS raised its FD rates recently, it is not likely to chase these deposits aggressively -- simply because it doesn’t have to.”


ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 25


DOMESTIC RETAIL BANK OF THE YEAR SINGAPORE, DBS BANK BRANCH INNOVATION OF THE YEAR - SILVER, POSB

Shaping the customer’s banking experience

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he banking industry is a competitive one. As a leading Asian bank, it is important for us to continually innovate and place customers at the heart of the banking experience. To become a bank renowned for our distinctive brand of Asian Service, we implemented a set of Asian service standards that would guide our actions and ensure that we are a bank that is respectful, easy to deal with and dependable. These standards are the building blocks of our service strategy and they define all our touchpoints – from how we interact with our customers on the frontline to how we design our branches, processes and systems from a customer’s point of view.

process of completing the account opening a breeze for customers. Moving beyond the traditional bank branch, DBS Remix is a paperless new concept branch that appeals to young adults with digital innovations such as interactive touch screens and tablets. Reaching out to the youth Touted as Singapore’s first “bank by day, financial playground by night”, the DBS Remix branch transforms from a branch into a social space after banking hours where young adults can participate in workshops that bring them one step closer to realising their aspirations. Most importantly, DBS Remix is a cocreation platform where young people can showcase their talents and works. Through such meaningful engagements, we are able to provide value-added service, establish a relationship and continue to serve these customers as they move into other life stages.

Customised banking service DBS serves a wide spectrum of customers in Singapore with different banking needs and preferences. To create a more customised banking experience for customers, we embarked on several initiatives including extending our reach into the heartlands with key partners such as SingPost. A customer-centric approach The landmark collaboration enables In 2012, DBS implemented a new branch DBS/POSB customers to conduct banking operating model at all our branches to transactions at more than 140 outlets, up help further strengthen our relationship substantially from the bank’s 80 branches. with customers and to optimise branch We also introduced the first bank branch efficiency. With the new customer-centric in a community club: POSB model – which was first Zhenghua is a compact-sized piloted in late 2010 – branch branch that offers residents managers and their teams “We are the first quick access to popular counter bank in Singapore to are empowered to generate services such as account implement speech business in and around their opening and caters to their cash analytics technology at geographic vicinity through transaction needs round the our award-winning cus- programmes that are relevant clock via self-service banking tomer centre to help to the customers who patronise identify and address facilities. their branches. customer concerns In addition to transforming quickly.” POSB Account Services banking experience at To better serve the needs of the branches, leveraging work permit holders – who technology is also key to require very basic banking services such as delivering superior customer service. We salary crediting – we established the POSB are the first bank in Singapore to implement Account Services Centre. speech analytics technology at our awardThe centre is dedicated to bringing greater winning customer centre to help identify convenience to workers and employers and address customer concerns quickly. by implementing an appointment system. As a result, customer satisfaction and For greater efficiency, applications are pre- response times have improved. DBS was submitted by the employers and processed also the first in the country to introduce by the bank before their visit. internet and mobile banking to make The centre staff is also equipped with banking available to customers on-the-go. the necessary language capabilities to Since 2010, we have developed more than communicate with the workers, making the 10 mobile applications (apps) catering to 26 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

Jeremy Soo, Managing Director and Head, Consumer Banking Group (Singapore), DBS Bank

our customer’s online banking, protection, rewards and payment needs. Our latest app, DBS Rewards, makes it a breeze for customers to track and redeem their rewards points instantaneously at participating merchants through their smartphones. DBS is also a trailblazer in the social media space. We are the first bank in Singapore to engage customers via Twitter, launch a regional corporate Facebook page and to provide live photo updates of DBS events via Instagram. The various initiatives to place customers at the heart of the banking experience have helped DBS clinch the award of Best Retail Bank for the second consecutive year. DBS continues to execute against strategy to enhance our service to customers by presenting Asian insights, and transforming customer banking experience through innovative service delivery.

CONTACT DBS Bank 12 Marina Boulevard, DBS Asia Central @ MBFC Tower 3, Singapore 018982 Phone Number: (65) 6878 8888 Fax Number: (65) 6222 4478 Website: www.dbs.com


ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 27


DOMESTIC RETAIL BANK OF THE YEAR - KAZAKHSTAN JSC “EURASIAN BANK”

Eurasian Bank – one of Kazakhstan’s strongest

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urasian Bank, which was founded three years after Kazakhstan’s independence in 1994, is one of the country’s financially strongest banks today. While many Kazakhstan banks borrowed heavily and lent profligately during the go-go economic years beginning in 2000, Eurasian Bank pursued prudent borrowing and lending policies. That allowed it not only to weather the 2008-2009 global financial crisis, but also to emerge as one of Kazakhstan’s 10 largest banks. In fact, during the crisis, Eurasian Bank actually added business lines. Since Michael Eggleton became chief executive officer in 2009, the bank has shored up its balance sheet, broadened its operations at home and abroad, and become one of the most innovative financial institutions in Kazakhstan. In fact, during Mr. Eggleton’s thirty three months at the helm, the bank has made more profit than its previous 15 years combined, in fact over four times more. Eurasian Bank began in 1994 with a narrow focus, catering to corporations, mainly in the Eurasian group. It now serves Mr Michael Eggleton, Chief Executive Officer of Eurasian Bank Eurasian Bank’s sparkling financial a full range of clients. Proof of that is that 50.4 financial officials have been calling for since percent of its current loan portfolio is loans to the crisis. The bank’s loan portfolio soared by performance and innovation have led to it corporations, 38% to individuals and 11.6% 30.4% during the first eight months of 2012. winning awards for banking excellence. On Eurasian Bank’s solid financial July 5 of this year, for example, the major to small and medium-sized businesses. That kind of balanced portfolio is helping to assure performance and ability to minimize financial publication dubbed Eurasian Bank problem loans have enabled it to obtain the “Best Bank in Kazakhstan.” Eurasian Bank’s stability and growth. A delighted CEO Michael Eggleton noted A combination of expanded business and financing from abroad at a time when the streamlining of operations led to the bank’s overseas loan spigot has been turned off to that “given today’s global volatility, when most of Kazakhstan’s banks. choosing a bank, clients and investors seek net profit surging tenfold “A combination of Many of the Western banks reliability and financial stability. This award between 2010 and 2011 – to 6.05 billion tenge, or $40.3 expanded business and that lent billions of dollars to highlights the efficiency of the bank’s strategy million. The jump in income streamlining of opera- Kazakhstan’s banking sector and continued improvement of its business.” Another confirmation of the bank’s gave Eurasian Bank an enviable tions led to the bank’s net during the go-go years stopped profit surging tenfold lending after 2009 because of strategy was that on August 2 of this year 21 percent return on equity. Standard & Poor’s affirmed Eurasian Bank’s One reason for the profit between 2010 and 2011 trouble obtaining repayments. increase was Eurasian Bank’s – to 6.05 billion tenge, or Eurasian Bank enhanced its credit rating of B+, outlook stable. $40.3 million.” reputation as an innovation The rater said the bank’s strengths included acquisition in 2011 of Societe leader by opening the first of excellent management, a balanced operation, Generale’s ProstoCredit MCO, which specializes in consumer loans. A dozens of Retail Service Centers around a good liquidity picture, a good income-todebt ratio, and an excellent risk-management particular bright spot for Eurasian Bank this Kazakhstan in 2012. The centers offer a full range of services in program. year has been stunning growth in its Moscow a compact area of 30 to 100 square meters. operation, which opened in late 2009. The Moscow division now has five times They give customers a much broader choice more clients than in the third quarter of of locations to make a loan payment, obtain CONTACT 2011. And the number of transactions has a credit card or complete another banking Eurasian bank JSC jumped twentyfold. Lending has followed transaction. 56, Kunayev street, 050002, Almaty, Eurasian Bank plans to open more than 70 a similar pattern, tripling between the third Republic of Kazakhstan quarter of last year and April of 2012 to more additional Retail Service Centers in 2012. It Phone Number: +7 727 244 53 79 expects the convenient locations to double than 1 billion rubles, or $30.3 million. Fax Number: +7 727 244 53 89 Eurasian Bank’s prudent pre-crisis policies the number of active customers it serves, investors@eubank.kz have allowed it to do the kind of lending from the current 592,000 to more than 1 www.eubank.kz million. that Kazakhstan businesses, individuals and 28 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012


ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 29


DOMESTIC RETAIL BANK OF THE YEAR - PHILIPPINES SME BANK OF THE YEAR - PHILIPPINES RIZAL COMMERCIAL BANKING CORPORATION

RCBC: Leading through constant innovation By embracing change, implementing fresh strategies for growth, and utilizing new technologies to expand its market reach, Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC) is rapidly reinforcing its stance as the bank of choice for its retail and corporate clientele, and for small and medium enterprises (SME). RCBC’s reinvigorated drive to serve its customers better has resulted in the creation of highly innovative products and services that provide greater banking convenience to more segments of the population. Clients now have more diversified means of managing their finances, more channels for personalized banking requirements, and more advanced business solutions to streamline their operations. “RCBC is definitely reaping today the rewards of a wide-ranging transformation engineered in 2008 to grow our customer base and provide more value-added products and services,” said bank Senior Executive Vice President Ismael R. Sandig. “Investment in technology is one of the key components of this transformation.”

Receiving the Asian Banking & Finance Retail Banking Awards 2012 for RCBC from Charlton Media Publisher & Editor Tim Charlton are RCBC’s FSVP Reynaldo P. Orsolino, AVP Nerissa C. Toledo & SEVP Ismael R. Sandig

website and Phone-A-Loan, and the newly launched Women’s Enterprise Loan product, allow it to touch base with more SMEs. RCBC has more than doubled its number of lending centers all over the country in just four years, and has grown its portfolio from P6 billion at the start of 2008 to P17 billion by mid-2012. RCBC’s SME initiatives have allowed the bank to increase its presence in a very critical segment of the economy, bridging the gap between traditional banking and small businesses in the Philippines. Having done so it has earned recognition of Philippine SME Bank of the Year.

Strengthening presence in SMEs Giving more attention to the growing SME market in 2008, RCBC introduced innovative reforms in its loan origination and administration “RCBC introduced process, using technology to innovative reforms in Servicing retail segments bring itself closer to SMEs. its loan origination and Tan also initiated a major RCBC implemented a new administration proc- overhaul of the RCBC Retail screening system for loans, ess, using technology Banking Group (RBG), introduced credit scoring, to bring itself closer to igniting a strong distribution simplified handling of existing SMEs.” franchise in 2008. Alongside accounts and developed new its conservative acquisition of products/programs. small to medium-sized banks, The potential is huge considering that RCBC conducted extensive customer SMEs account for about 99% of total segmentation and identification processes, businesses in the Philippines. “The market developed new products targeting provides much needed employment and consumer/retail, middle market, and large learning of technical skills in many sectors corporations, and improved customer of the economy,” said First Senior Vice touchpoints via electronic banking. President Reynaldo P. Orsolino. “SMEs are One flagship product, the RCBC often the backbone of the local economy. MyWallet Card, is instrumental in helping Even in urban centers, they are key steps the bank attain its five million customer towards growth in scale and business target in five years. This prepaid card experience, eventually emerging as large functions much like an ATM card without corporates. Our dream is to see some of our requiring any maintaining balance, which clients grow with us and eventually list in makes it very affordable. It is ideal for the stock market.” tapping the “unbanked” sector, made up of The bank’s notable technology-based those who are hesitant to enter a bank and product and service innovations, like access its formal financial services. Three the self-assessment portals Get-A-Loan out of four Filipinos are said to belong to 30 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

this sector. The MyWallet Card has since forged partnerships with various merchant establishments to target specific customers. The RBG has also become aggressive in developing and deploying mobile phonebased banking solutions as part of its efforts to enhance its electronic banking channels. Its iPhone and Android Smartphone banking applications provide mobile functionality enhanced by its integration with RCBC MyWallet, ATMs, RCBC AccessOne internet banking portal and other online offerings. To deepen its relationship with customers even further, the RBG strengthened its partnership with RCBC’s sister companies under the Yuchengco Group, to promote more the Bancassurance, credit cards, consumer loans and mutual funds. As a result, the Treasury, Trust and Private Banking products became more visible to the branches for cross-selling initiatives. “We intend to sustain this momentum and offer even more diversified products and services that fit every customer’s needs,” said Sandig. “We have been named the Philippine Domestic Retail Bank of the Year twice in a row by the ABF already, so we will continue to embrace this salesoriented culture.”

CONTACT Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation Yuchengco Tower, RCBC Plaza, 6819 Ayala Avenue, Makati City, 0727 Philippines Phone Number: (+632) 894 - 9000 Fax Number: (+632) 894 - 9414 Website: www.rcbc.com www.getaloan.com.ph


ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 31


BIG ISSUE 2

Why are Malaysian banks going into China? Where there are issues, there are opportunities.

I

f Malaysian banks’ aggressive expansion into China is anything to go by, the Chinese banking industry might be in for exciting, if not healthy, years ahead. China is currently home to 5 of Malaysia’s 10 major banking groups. This is despite market speculation that the Chinese banking sector is expected to undergo major consolidation in the next few years, according to Standard & Poor’s. Malaysian banks in China Branches of Malaysia’s largest bank, Maybank, can be seen in Beijing and Shanghai and have been doing well so far. CIMB Bank, on the other hand, has a 19.99% stake in Bank of Yingkou, a commercial bank in China founded in 1997 that is planning to expand its operations throughout China. Hong Leong Bank has bought a 20% stake in the Bank of Chengdu while Affin Bank, Malaysia’s smallest anchor bank, intends to launch Islamic banking in China through its shareholder, Bank of East Asia. Through its subsidiary, Affin

32 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

“China is currently home to 5 of Malaysia’s 10 major banking groups.”

Islamic Bank Berhad, the bank offers a range of Islamic banking products and services in the areas of enterprise and consumer banking. Asia Commercial Bank was renamed to Public Bank (Hong Kong) in 2006 when it was acquired by Public Bank Berhad, Malaysia’s leading bank in shareholder funds. Public Bank (Hong Kong) now focuses on expanding its retail and commercial banking business and on building its brand name through branch expansion and aggressive marketing. Improving net interest margins So what do these Malaysian banks see in China that they are expanding their footprint into the country amidst its currently troubled banking sector? Standard & Poor’s director for financial services ratings Ivan Tan reckons that the larger Malaysian banks are diversifying into other countries to position themselves as regional banks and improve their net interest margins. Their expansion into China, he adds, is part of their

broader regional strategy to diversify into faster growing economies, including Indonesia and Thailand. “In our view, Malaysia is a matured banking system, and interest margins have come under pressure due to competition amidst a low interest rate environment. Regional economies offer the prospect of higher loans growth at more attractive margins,” says Tan. He expects Malaysian banks to adopt a sensible diversification strategy and continue to pursue regional expansion at a measured pace, taking into account the more risky operating environment in emerging market economies. Issues turned opportunities It is also important to note that while the Chinese banking sector faces several issues today, it is still home to a lot of opportunities. “Where there are issues there are also opportunities,” notes Jason Ekberg, consultant at Oliver Wyman. He notes that this is particularly true for those market entrants that have unique capabilities and strong liquidity positions to leverage, especially at a time when China is seeking to re-stimulate the economy. Ekberg cites several reasons behind the expansion of Malaysian banks into China. Firstly, the Malaysian banks could be leveraging their strong liquidity positions as their LTD ratio was a healthy 76% compared to many other regional markets who have 90-100%+ LTDs. The banks are also following their Malaysian clients who are expanding into China as part of the ‘China growth story,’ not to mention their intention to build their onshore capabilities to capture cross-border flows between Malaysia and China. Another Standard & Poor’s director for financial services ratings Liao Qiang notes that while there is relatively high risk in China’s banking sector, it may not be appropriate to tag it as a ‘troubled’ one. “Credits risks have built up in the recent years along with strong credit growth in the system. But there are many structural factors supporting the banks’ credit profiles, including still robust economy, strong system-wide liquidity, good net interest margins and sizable credit loss reserves among other things,” says Qiang.


DOMESTIC RETAIL BANK OF THE YEAR SULTANATE OF OMAN

bank muscat

bank muscat - Retail Bank of the Year

b

ank muscat, the No. 1 bank in the Sultanate of Oman, is ranked among the top 500 banks worldwide. bank muscat enjoys an unrivalled position in Oman as well as the region, a clear recognition focusing on the global best practices pursued by the bank. As the leading bank with a fast-growing network, bank muscat aims to deliver reliable, dynamic and innovative banking services to the largest banking family in Oman. The bank draws on its expertise to provide customers with the best banking products and services. bank muscat offers a complete range of retail and personal banking products and services through the widest network of 135 branches, ATMs CDMs and PoS terminals spread across Oman. The bank plays a leadership role in promoting the savings culture in Oman through the flagship al Mazyona Savings Scheme which offers a whopping total prize money of RO 6 million in 2012 AbdulRazak Ali Issa - Chief Executive , bank muscat with unparalleled winning chances for all products and services, including electronic segments across the Sultanate. The cards payment and web-based services in and ePayments department enjoys the top tune with Oman moving towards a rank in Oman for total volume of credit cashless society and meeting the banking and debit cards issued and acquired, with requirements of a young, tech-savvy approximately 6,300 PoS terminals and 1.2 generation. million transactions per month. The bank recently launched a unique The bank’s Sayyarati is the preferred auto social responsibility campaign titled loan product in Oman and baituna housing ‘Borrow Wisely’ aimed at educating the loan product offers convenient general public to carefully plans to suit customer needs control their borrowing. The with simplified documentation campaign offers advisory “The new capital and flexible repayment injection means we services to customers on how options. mBanking is a first in to take loans which will not are extremely well Oman, providing customers become a burden and can be placed to continue with banking services such as repaid within their financial with our bold account balance inquiry, third expansion strategy.” capabilities. The ‘Borrow party fund transfers as well Wisely’ campaign highlights as utility and bill payments the commitment of the bank through mobile phone devices. in enhancing its role in social responsibility Expat Services provides quality financial and not just being a financial institution products catering to the savings and/or with its eyes on profitability only. investment needs of expatriate clients, Over the last 30 years, bank muscat as well as banking related services such has taken retail banking services to a new as offshore account opening, financial level and remains committed to making planning and money transfers. banking convenient and centered around bank muscat is all set to launch Islamic customer’s needs. In step with customer banking operations, subject to approval needs which are constantly changing, from the Central Bank of Oman. For bank muscat provides suitable financial this purpose, the bank has announced solutions, building stronger relationship ‘Meethaq’ Islamic Banking with RO 150 with customers. million capital. The corporate philosophy of bank The bank enjoys an edge in hi-tech muscat is underpinned by the rich Omani

culture and traditions and the bank prides itself in its deep understanding of customer needs, offering financial guidance at all levels. With the widest reach in serving customers and the largest network of 135 branches in the Sultanate, bank muscat exceeds customer expectations at all levels. bank muscat is among few GCC based banks in a position to provide customers and counterparts pan-GCC coverage. With branches in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait and an associate in Bahrain with its branch in Qatar, and Representative Offices in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Singapore, bank muscat is uniquely positioned to serve customers in the GCC region and Asia.All bank muscat products and services have evolved over the years in tandem with specific customer requirements. The bank remains committed to excellence in providing innovative banking solutions.

CONTACT bank muscat PO Box 134, PC 112, Air Port Heights, Seeb, Sultanate of Oman Phone Number: +968 24 795555 Fax Number: +968 24 767242 customerservice@bankmuscat.com www.bankmuscat.com

ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 33


SECTOR REPORT: ISLAMIC BANKING

Here’s how Islamic banks can overcome scale disadvantage

Find out more about the latest issues in Islamic finance including regulations, Shariah compliance, and the Islamic banks’ severe scale disadvantage vs conventional banks.

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s the Asian market grows more and more attractive for Islamic banking and financing products, even international banks are looking to tap this market already. No less an institution than Goldman Sachs is reportedly planning to issue Sukuk bonds, and improbable as it sounds, Ireland has begun talking up its ability to be an Islamic banking centre, according to data from Australian banking research and advisory firm East & Partners. The firm notes that currently, there is US$1.1 trillion in Shariah-compliant assets worldwide, up 33% in 2010, and that is expected to grow by as much as 15 to 20% this year. “There was a record $43 billion in sukuk issuance in the first quarter of this year, doubling the same period in 2011,” it adds. Some established banks, such as Standard Chartered, HSBC and the Singaporean and Malaysian majors, are already well placed to take advantage of this opportunity, notes East & Partners. It adds that Switzerland’s Bank Sarasin is also pondering enter34 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

“There is US$1.1 trillion in Shariah-compliant assets worldwide, up 33% on 2010, and that is expected to grow by as much as 15 to 20% this year.”

ing the high net worth Malaysian market with Islamic product. With a rapidly growing market that catches the attention even of big international banks, issues on regulations arise. Is there a need to impose more globally consistent regulations for Islamic banks in terms of liquidity management and financial reporting? Regulations on Islamic banking Syed Alwi Bin Mohamed Sultan, managing director and head of Islamic finance for Asia Pacific at BNP Paribas Malaysia Berhad, reckons the calls for regulations for the Islamic banking industry have come about due to the differences of opinions of scholars in different jurisdictions. But it is important to first recognize that Islamic banks operate within localised domestic financial systems and come under the regulatory purview of the domestic regulator. The need to regulate such decisions then resides with the local regulator. Secondly, he notes that Islamic banks are an essential part of the

global financial system hence must be regulated under a consistent and similar regulatory framework as the conventional industry, otherwise it will be open to arbitrage abuses. “These calls for a consistent treatment of products have only been an issue in very recent times because Islamic finance has proven to be a viable financial solution within the global financial system. Therefore, this is a positive development within the Islamic finance industry as it has gained the recognition of the market players,” he adds. Over the past two decades, entities such as the Accounting and Auditing Organization for Islamic Financial Institutions, International Islamic Financial Market, and Islamic Financial Services Board have been established to ensure the development of the Islamic banking industry in a consistent manner within global banking standards. On the other hand, Badlisyah Abdul Ghani, executive director and chief executive officer of CIMB Islamic notes that what is needed is


SECTOR REPORT: ISLAMIC BANKING for Islamic finance to be regulated in the same manner as conventional finance. “We should aim to have as much as possible a consistent regulatory framework in the same manner that we are trying to achieve in conventional finance, but it cannot be at the expense of making the industry rigid and less dynamic than conventional finance,” says Badlisyah. Shariah compliance Adil Ahmad, former CEO of Kuwait International Bank, says there are ways that lead to a more uniform Shariah compliance over time. He notes that at the moment, Islamic banking assets (totaling approximately USD 1 trillion) account for approximately 1% of the world’s total banking assets. Practitioners, regulators and supporters of Islamic banking want this percentage to increase over time, and for Islamic banking to have a position in the financial world at least commensurate with the percentage of Muslims in the world. “For this to happen, the various current clusters of Islamic banking like South East Asia, South Asia, the Middle East and Europe/America will have to move towards standardization and harmonisation of global Islamic banking suite of products and services, so that they are interchangeable across the various geographies. This is what, I believe, will lead to more uniform Shariah compliance over time,” says Ahmad. Syed, meanwhile, has a different view and believes perfect uniformity may not be possible nor desirable as Shariah is the divinely ordained blueprint of human conduct that branches into faith, worship, ethics, socio-human relations, economics and finance. From these divine sources, he notes, Muslims have derived the Islamic law, or Fiqh, which represents the human comprehension of the divine revelations. Differences of opinions are then natural and inevitable. “Therefore, achieving perfect uniformity may not be possible nor is it even desirable. What we must strive to achieve is greater harmonization among the differences of opinions of Islamic scholars. This, I hope and I believe, will be achieved with greater success as the Islamic banking industry grows in maturity,” says Syed. Badlisyah concurs and reckons

that every jurisdiction will have different law of the land, legislation, financial regulation, market conventions, customs, cultures and outlook in life depending on society, and all of these influences how Shariah is applied in any financial transaction. He adds: “Although there will never be uniformity in the application of Shariah, there is and will always be uniformity of Shariah because everyone follows the same Shariah, which is the Quran and Hadith. The question of whether Shariah compliance is more or less uniform is irrelevant as it is 100% uniform.” Growth drivers But regulations and uniformity issues aside, what will be the key drivers for continuing the growth in Islamic finance? According to Badlisyah, the key driver would be the existence of an enabling and effective legislative, regulatory, legal and Shariah governance framework for Islamic finance. Without this, all other drivers become irrelevant. Ahmad notes that while the sterling growth in Islamic banking over the last decade has been primarily due to growth in the consumer banking segment where the rapid growth has been fuelled by new products such as Shariah compliant credit cards, auto finance, and housing finance, Islamic banks will have to offer a progressively broader suite of products and services, such as asset management and wealth management. He reckons that Islamic banks face a severe scale disadvantage vis-a-vis

Badlisyah Abdul Ghani

Adil Ahmad

Syed Alwi Bin Mohamed Sultan

conventional banks, and this inhibits their efforts to provide a bigger range of banking products and services in a cost effective manner. “For example, the largest Islamic bank in the world has total assets of approximately USD 60 billion, while there are over 25 conventional banks each with assets in excess of USD 1 trillion. Most Islamic banks also operate primarily in a single country, whereas many conventional banks have broad and deep operations in multiple countries.” BNP Paribas’ Syed, on the other hand, reckons that if Islamic finance is to sustain continuity, change is a prerequisite. Islamic banks will need to change to the needs of their customers, the technologies, the products, the economy and many other drivers of opportunities towards identifying new sources of profit. “Growing affluence of Muslims and society, increased supply of liquidity, a need to diversify allocation of funds and capital, growing sophistication of investors and consumers, loss of loyalty of customers to single banking relationships, liberalization of financial regulations allowing cross border flow of liquidity, etc. The question is not WHAT the drivers of growth are but HOW do we manage these drivers to achieve sustained growth,” says Syed. From what we know now, Islamic finance definitely offers a whole new platform for banks and clients alike to grow. As East & Partners notes, Islamic banking could also mean opportunity for local institutions which are close to their communities and are well placed to tap into the growth.

ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 35


Asian Banking and Finance Awards 2012

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n its first year, the Wholesale Banking Awards saw a considerably high number of entries which bodes well for the upcoming years of this prestigious awards. And now on its sixth year, the Asian Banking Retail Banking Awards received a record number of nominations which proved the integrity set by the awards throughout the years. The judges of Wholesale Banking Awards were: • Mohit Mehrotra, Deloitte Consulting, Southeast Asia • Liew Nam Soon, Ernst and Young Advisory LLP • Andrew Pitcher, Accenture The Retail Banking Awards’ judges were: • Dominic Nixon, PwC • Egidio Zarrella, KPMG • Mohit Mehrotra, Deloitte Consulting, Southeast Asia • Liew Nam Soon, Ernst and Young Advisory LLP The awarding ceremony in Singapore last August 23 was hosted by no less than BBC World News anchor Rico Hizon and was graced by nearly 200 Asian bankers. “We take pleasure in recognising the 27 winners in the Wholesale Banking Awards and 35 winners in the Retail Banking Awards. Congratulations to all the winning banks. We hope to see you all again next year,” said Publisher Tim Charlton. ABF salutes all the winners for their outstanding performances in the respective categories.

Tim Charlton and Rico Hizon of BBC World News

Lawrence J. Wolfe, Phan Thi Hai Yen, and Nguyen Thi Kieu Anh of Techcombank

Asian Banking and Finance Wholesale Banking Awards 2012 International Cash Management Bank of the Year J.P. Morgan

Bruce Macfarlane, Xiaoxuan Yeo & Shiv Sivarajah of ING Bank NV

International Trade Finance Bank of the Year Citi Transaction Services International Technology and Operations Bank of the Year Euroclear Bank Egypt Domestic Cash Management Bank of the Year Bank of Alexandria Hong Kong Domestic Cash Management Bank of the Year Hang Seng Bank Limited Indonesia Domestic Cash Management Bank of the Year PT Bank CIMB Niaga Tbk Malaysia Domestic Cash Management Bank of the Year CIMB Investment Bank Bhd Philippines Domestic Cash Management Bank of the Year BDO Unibank, Inc.

36 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

Parvaiz Dalal, Stephen Chua & Amol Lara of Citi Transaction Services


Jeremy Koh of DBS Bank

Hanny Kusmawati of PT Bank CIMB Niaga Tbk

Le Tri Thong of DongA Money Transfer Limited Company

Olivier Grimonpont of Euroclear Bank

Yiu Pak Chow of Hang Seng Bank Limited

Tina Singh of ICICI Bank Limited

Emmanuel Narciso of BDO Unibank Inc.

Md. Afzalul Bashar and Md. Mosaddek-ul-Alam of Janata Bank Limited

ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 37


Singapore Domestic Cash Management Bank of the Year OCBC Bank Thailand Domestic Cash Management Bank of the Year KASIKORNBANK Vietnam Domestic Cash Management Bank of the Year Techcombank Bangladesh Domestic Trade Finance Bank of the Year Janata Bank Limited Hong Kong Domestic Trade Finance Bank of the Year Hang Seng Bank Limited Indonesia Domestic Trade Finance Bank of the Year PT Bank CIMB Niaga Tbk Malaysia Domestic Trade Finance Bank of the Year CIMB Investment Bank Bhd

Kiat Lim & Thomas Wiles of J.P. Morgan

Philippines Domestic Trade Finance Bank of the Year Bank of the Philippine Islands Singapore Domestic Trade Finance Bank of the Year OCBC Bank Thailand Domestic Trade Finance Bank of the Year KASIKORNBANK The Kyrgyz Republic Domestic Trade Finance Bank of the Year Demir Kyrgyz International Bank CJSC Vietnam Domestic Trade Finance Bank of the Year Techcombank Bangladesh Domestic Project Finance Bank of the Year Janata Bank Limited Singapore Project Finance Bank of the Year ING Bank NV

Partini Binti Ibrahim & Mohamad Fadzil Bin Abdul Kadir of Maybank

Thailand Domestic Project Finance Bank of the Year Siam Commercial Bank Public Company Limited Cambodia Domestic Technology & Operations Bank of the Year ABA Bank India Domestic Technology & Operations Bank of the Year ICICI Bank Limited Laos Domestic Technology & Operations Bank of the Year Banque Pour Le Commerce Exterieur Lao Public (BCEL) Malaysia Domestic Technology & Operations Bank of the Year Maybank Philippines Domestic Technology & Operations Bank of the Year Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation

Linus Goh of OCBC Bank

Taiwan Domestic Technology & Operations Bank of the Year Taishin Bank Thailand Technology & Operations Bank of the Year Standard Chartered Bank (Thai) Pcl. Yemen Domestic Technology & Operations Bank of the Year Tadhamon International Islamic Bank (TIIB) Singapore Domestic Foreign Exchange Bank of the Year DBS Bank Vietnam Domestic Foreign Exchange Bank of the Year DongA Bank Yemen Domestic Foreign Exchange Bank of the Year Tadhamon International Islamic Bank (TIIB) 38 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

Reynaldo Orsolino & Nerissa Toledo of RCBC


Phoukhong Chanthachack of Banque Pour Le Commerce Exterieur Lao Public (BCEL)

Sahba Saint-Claire of Standard Chartered Bank (Thai) Pcl.

Joseph Jao of Taishin Bank

Bandit Rojanavongse of Siam Commercial Bank PCL

Soo Bee Teong & Janet Lee of CIMB Investment Bank Bhd

UOB Team

Delegates from BDO & RCBC

ABF Awards Delegates

ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 39


Asian Banking and Finance Retail Banking Awards 2012 International Retail Bank of the Year Citi Domestic Retail Bank of the Year - Kazakhstan JSC “Eurasian Bank” Domestic Retail Bank of the Year - Israel Mizrahi Tefahot Bank Ltd. Domestic Retail Bank of the Year - Sultanate of Oman bank muscat Domestic Retail Bank of the Year -Taiwan Taishin Bank

Asian Banking and Finance Team

Domestic Retail Bank of the Year - Indonesia PT Bank OCBC NISP Tbk Domestic Retail Bank of the Year - Philippines Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation Domestic Retail Bank of the Year - Singapore DBS Bank Domestic Retail Bank of the Year - Cambodia Cambodian Public Bank Plc Domestic Retail Bank of the Year - Malaysia Public Bank Domestic Retail Bank of the Year - Bangladesh Janata Bank Limited Domestic Retail Bank of the Year - Vietnam Techcombank

Awards Dinner

Domestic Finance Company of the Year - Singapore Hong Leong Finance Limited Domestic Finance Company of the Year - Vietnam DongA Money Transfer Limited Company Domestic Finance Company of the Year - Hong Kong PrimeCredit Limited Branch Innovation of the Year • GOLD: OCBC Bank • SILVER: POSB • BRONZE: Standard Chartered Bank (Hong Kong) Ltd.

Tim Charlton, Editor-in-Chief, Asian Banking and Finance Magazine

Advertising Campaign of the Year - Hong Kong HSBC (Hong Kong) Advertising Campaign of the Year - Malaysia CIMB Bank Website of the Year - India ICICI Bank Limited Website of the Year - Philippines Bank of the Philippine Islands Website of the Year - Singapore Maybank Singapore Website of the Year - Bahrain BMI Bank

40 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

Hisham AL Zadjali of bank muscat

Khamhou Thongthavy of Banque Pour Le Commerce Exterieur Lao Public (BCEL)


Networking Cocktail

Suraiya Abdul Samad of CIMB

Koh Kar Siong & Koh Cheng Hwee of DBS

Paul Hodes of Citi

Nannette Regala of BDO Unibank, Inc.

Devabalan Theyventheran of CIMB Group

Kalyani Nair of CIMB and Ladarat Pongurai of CIMB Thai Bank

Paul Yeung of HSBC Hong Kong & Nadeesha Senaratne of HSBC Sri Lanka

Le Tri Thong of DongA Money Transfer Limited Company

Zain Majidulla of JSC “Eurasian Bank”

Ian Macdonald of Hong Leong Finance Limited ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 41


Online Securities Platform of the Year - Singapore OCBC Securities Online Securities Platform of the Year - Hong Kong Standard Chartered Bank (Hong Kong) Ltd. Online Securities Platform of the Year - Malaysia CIMB Bank Credit Card Initiative of the Year - Taiwan Taishin Bank Credit Card Initiative of the Year - Singapore United Overseas Bank Credit Card Initiative of the Year - Malaysia OCBC Bank (Malaysia) Berhad Credit Card Initiative of the Year - Sri Lanka HSBC Sri Lanka

Md. Afzalul Bashar and Md. Mosaddek-ul-Alam of Janata Bank Limited

Credit Card Initiative of the Year - Philippines BDO Unibank, Inc. Corporate Social Responsibility - Program of the Year • GOLD: National Australia Bank • SILVER: Citibank Core Banking System Initiative of the Year - Malaysia CIMB Bank Berhad -Singapore Branch Core Banking System Initiative of the Year - Laos Banque Pour Le Commerce Exterieur Lao Public (BCEL) Core Banking System Initiative of the Year - Thailand CIMB Thai Bank Public Company Limited

Tina Singh of ICICI Bank Limited

Caroline Davis of National Australia Bank

Online Banking Initiative of the Year- Singapore OCBC Bank Online Banking Initiative of the Year - India ICICI Bank Limited Online Banking Initiative of the Year - Hong Kong HSBC (Hong Kong) Asean SME Bank of the Year OCBC Bank SME Bank of the Year - Philippines Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation

Sien Vee Loc of OCBC Bank Berhad

Na Wu Beng of Bank OCBC NISP

SME Bank of the Year - Hong Kong HSBC (Hong Kong) SME Bank of the Year - Thailand Siam Commercial Bank PCL Employer Award of the Year • GOLD: Maybank Singapore • SILVER: HSBC (Hong Kong)

Yvonne Cheong & Dennis Tan of OCBC Bank

42 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012


Lim Kuo Siong & Wong Keng Fye of Maybank Singapore

Reynaldo Orsolino, Nerissa Toledo & Ismael Sandig of RCBC

Raymond Chee of OCBC Securities

Linus Goh of OCBC Bank

Aman Narain & Brian Parker of Standard Chartered Bank Hong Kong

Susanna Liew of PrimeCredit

Joseph Jao and Christy Shyy of Taishin Bank

Peter Cheong of Public Bank

Sirichai Sombutsiri of Siam Commercial Bank PCL

Nguyen Thi Kieu Anh, Phan Thi Hai Yen, and Lawrence J. Wolfe of Techcombank

Jetno Tsai of United Overseas Bank

ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 43


OPINION

ANANDA GUDIMETLA 5 factors affecting investments attracted by capital markets

Secrets in capital markets

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apital Markets are primarily driven by the exchange of Capital in the form of cash or security by those in need of Capital and by those offering it. The investment attracted by any Capital Market is influenced by many factors.

What influences capital markets? 1. Systemic Risks These are largely dependent on the structure and processes of a Capital Market system and the country, which it is associated with. Due to economic fluctuations such as recession and the recent global economic crisis, the structure of the global Capital Markets has been strengthened by increasing the authority of regulatory authorities, setting up new authorities and on having Central Counter Parties (CCP) responsible for execution of Trade or Trade Guarantee. CCP mitigates counter-party risk, which means it mitigates potential default of either of the parties involved in a transaction or trade. The Sub-Prime Crisis of 2008 has triggered new statutory provisions introduced by DoddFrank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, specifying a mandate on record keeping and reporting of credit swaps. 2. Efficiency Efficiency is the ability of the system to process trades at the earliest and within the stipulated time without errors. 3. Reliable Systems Reliable systems need to be available and operational all the time irrespective of risks from internal failures and external events. 44 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

BY ANANDA GUDIMETLA

Manager, Clearing & Settlement organization of USA

4. Cost Cost per Trade or Transaction to clear both sides of a Trade matters most for many investors. 5. Technology Influence Today technology has a great impact on all these influencing factors mentioned above. Regulatory authorities and CCPs need accurate database and monitoring systems. Efficiency of the system can be at the best with the use of the right technology. When the right technology is provided with good back-up (redundancy), a system becomes more reliable. Cost is controlled by improving efficiency, which is again dependent on technology. It is technology that saved us from the paper crisis in 1960s, when the settlement time was increased to 5 days to catch up with the paper work. With this, not only the need of paper was eliminated to a significant extent, but it also brought in more transparency and efficiency in to the system. It is not an exaggeration to state that technology is one of the most supportive and influencing underlying factors for Capital Markets. Being a global Financial Technology company, we understand this best. Presently, USA offers one of the most reliable and cost efficient systems in the world. Though it has faced a number of crises due to systemic risk events, US markets have successfully recovered in all instances and continue to attract the highest global investment and offers the lowest cost per Trade. This is because each crisis is followed by effective corrective measures such as the strengthening of regulatory authorities and system monitoring. It is noteworthy that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which is a prime Regulating Authority for Capital Markets in USA, has authorized CCP for Mortgage Backed Securities (MBS) Trades that have hitherto been traded without CCP and thus, take several months for settlement. This step is expected to reduce risks and streamline the settlement of MBS Trades beginning from April 2012. This is a good initiative and helps to prevent crisis such as Sub-Prime. Let us hope that markets of the rest of the world would do their part to mitigate such major systemic risks! Market Statistics According to McKinsey Global Institute, the total value of the world’s financial stock, comprising Equity Market Capitalization and outstanding Bonds and Loans, has been valued at $212 trillion at the end of 2010, surpassing the previous 2007 peak. Similarly, cross-border Capital flows grew to $4.4 trillion in 2010 after declining for two years prior.


ASEAN SME BANK OF THE YEAR ONLINE BANKING INITIATIVE OF THE YEAR - SINGAPORE BRANCH INNOVATION OF THE YEAR - GOLD

OCBC still the world’s strongest bank

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CBC Bank is the longest established Singapore bank, formed in 1932 from the merger of three local banks, the oldest of which was founded in 1912. It is now the second largest financial services group in Southeast Asia by assets and one of the world’s most highly-rated banks, with an Aa1 rating from Moody’s. It is ranked by Bloomberg Markets as the world’s strongest bank in 2011 and 2012. OCBC Bank and its subsidiaries offer a broad array of specialist financial and wealth management services, ranging from consumer, corporate, investment, private and transaction banking to treasury, insurance, asset management and stockbroking services. OCBC Bank’s key markets are Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Greater China. It has a network of over 500 branches and representative offices in 15 countries and territories, including about 400 branches and offices in Indonesia that are operated by its subsidiary, Bank OCBC NISP. In Malaysia, OCBC Bank ranks among the top five foreign banks in the country by assets. It has a network of 31 conventional banking branches and eight Islamic ones through its Islamic banking subsidiary OCBC Al-Amin. OCBC Bank’s insurance subsidiary, Great OCBC Bank in Singapore Eastern Holdings, is the largest insurance group in Singapore and Malaysia by assets. • First to launch customisable platinum debit card for businesses Its asset management subsidiary, Lion Global Investors, is one of the largest private • First to launch SMS/email notification service (eAlerts@ocbc) to keep sector asset management business owners up-to-date companies in Southeast Asia. Private banking services are “The Bank successful- on their cash flow and trade provided by subsidiary Bank ly deployed customer transactions status First to offer instant of Singapore, which continued insights gained from • to gain industry recognition in extensive customer corporate account opening First to offer offsite 2011 including being voted the surveys to launch dif- • “Outstanding Private Bank in ferentiated products quick cheque deposit services and services.” at selected petrol kiosks and Asia Pacific” by Private Banker industrial parks International. Over the past ten years, OCBC Bank has • First to launch banking programme (‘FRANK by OCBC’) targeted at capitalised on various opportunities to grow the youth and young working adults its customer base and deepen customer segmen relationships by focusing on developing innovative products and enhancing The Bank successfully deployed customer service delivery capabilities. Among these insights gained from extensive customer innovations, OCBC Bank was the: • First to launch full-service Sunday surveys to launch differentiated products and services like full-service Sunday Banking, Banking • First to launch mobile phone banking faster credit approval and turnaround time, simplified account opening and online and securities trading • First to launch iPad banking and banking processes, dedicated business banking centres, customisable debit cards for securities trading SMEs as well as financial services offerings • First to launch RMB trade settlement

tailored for families, children and seniors. Today, OCBC Bank has one of the most comprehensive wealth management businesses in the region, with extensive offerings across multiple product and distribution platforms to serve the diverse needs of different customer segments. Firmly committed to the cause of promoting entrepreneurship, OCBC Bank also supports various business awards that aim to give due recognition to deserving entrepreneurs and enterprises, ranging from emerging businesses to large corporates. This underscores the Bank’s commitment in helping SME customers achieve their ambitions at different stages of growth throughout their business life cycles.

CONTACT Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation Limited 65 Chulia Street, Singapore Phone Number: 6318 7222 Fax Number: 6533 7955 contactus@ocbc.com www.ocbc.com

ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 45


SECTOR REPORT: FOREIGN EXCHANGE

More hedging solutions for Asian banks revealed

As various services and products emerge across Asia and trade is settled in different currencies, we sought the insights of bankers and analysts for possible hedging solutions.

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s the banking and finance industry becomes internationalised, various products and services emerge across Asia and trade is then settled in different currencies. What can be its profound impact on the competitive landscape in Asian banking? What are possible hedging solutions? RMB vs USD According to Teo Kang Heng, managing director for corporate advisory, treasury & markets at DBS, the availability to settle in different currencies across Asia encourages more trade activities among Asian countries. Although USD continues to remain the base currency for most trade activities, RMB and CNH are increasingly used to settle trade activities with China. This, he notes, has led to more innovative financing activities to manage the risks associated with the RMB and CNH. 46 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

“For smaller banks the challenge will be how to manage their own risks in lieu of having sophisticated internal capabilities”

Teo says deliverable and nondeliverable forwards continue to be commonly used to hedge foreign exchange risk in such activities. “However, there has been an overwhelming increase in the demand for structured solutions to negate credit, interest rate and FX rate risks,” adds Teo. A wider network counts Furthermore, banks with a wider or more efficient network and better payment capability will definitely have an edge over others. In this particular payment system, CITIC Bank International treasurer Woody Chan reckons there are different payment markets in different currencies. “So when you have a network, it is easier to maintain a good banking relationship. Making payments will be prompt and much more efficient. Otherwise, you will need to rely on some other bank’s service so that

you can serve your own clients. Cash account pooling services or sweeping account would be the major solutions to have settlement in different currencies,” says Chan. But the challenge really lies on understanding these exposures at a regional level in order to manage the risk more effectively. Players are developing pooling solutions to address part of the challenge, notes Oliver Wyman consultant Jason Ekberg. Internally, clients have a number of strategies to minimize foreign exchange risk though this requires clear guidelines to manage the process such as using inter-company trades to centralize foreign exchange exposure, says Ekberg. “For smaller banks the challenge will be how to manage their own risks in lieu of having sophisticated internal capabilities – thus there could be interesting partnership options,” he adds.


SECTOR REPORT: FOREIGN EXCHANGE Local vs G3 currencies Chan recognizes that the rise of local currencies as a potential substitute for G3 currencies is getting more and more important especially that the trade flow in Asia is growing tremendously. He cites that the CNY/JPY foreign exchange quotation that started recently in Mainland China is a good example. “Given a long time, local currencies, like CNY, will place a much more important role in foreign exchange or trade settlement. DBS’ Teo concurs and believes that the Chinese RMB is one such currency that has gained popularity as a substitute for USD in recent times. Widen the use of RMB To maintain its popularity as a substitute, Teo notes that China will have to widen the use of its currency to include capital markets and investment products. “The potential of any local currency to become a substitute for G3 currencies depends highly on the economic and trade positions it commands in the global arena and the potential strength of its currency.” Oliver Wyman’s Ekberg meanwhile notes that though the issue depends on a number of factors such as liquidity/pricing, store of value, and regulatory treatment, the USD has been historically providing attractive pricing and stable store of currency. “This said, we are seeing intra-Asia liquidity rise, for example Korean bank’s issuing in Thai Baht and growth of Samurai bonds in Japan. SGD has also proven a strong currency and is an Asia wealth management hub. There’s also the questions about RMB which everyone is talking about like RMB trade finance and commodity solutions,” adds Ekberg.

Chan reckons that though banks are moving towards a tailor-made service model to serve clients, there is no “one size fits all” solution nowadays. Banks definitely need to have better-equipped and all-round marketers to deal with clients. Whilst most commercial banks have numerous distribution channels to cater to the different hedging requirements and expectations of their customers, Teo notes that customers can conduct simple hedging activities through the branch network, cash management system, FX portal or call an FX specialist directly. Structured solutions by product specialists and corporate advisory teams are available for customers with more sophisticated hedging needs, he adds. e-FX risk management These customized service models, however, do not always revolve around manual risk management solutions, especially with the rise of online banking. So with more and more large corporations starting to manage their exposure electronically, how can banks help SMEs transition from manual risk management to electronic foreign exchange risk management? CITIC Bank’s Chan, however, warns that there are times when we can not rely too much on electronic platforms because banks need to sit

Woody Chan

Jason Ekberg

Teo Kang Heng

down with the customer, talk, and analyze in order to come up with a solution. “But for things as simple as buying a product or a local currency, what the client needs is efficiency as well as the pricing. Normally the banks will provide those simple products on the electronic platform so that the clients could be just sitting at the office or logged on the internet so that they can see the price that they want and they can hit and execute the order,” says Chan. FX management for SMEs DBS’ Teo, on the other hand, says since SMEs usually do not need sophisticated risk management policies or systems, most of them prefer to consult an FX specialist over the phone. He adds that SMEs with conservative risk management policy commonly use vanilla FX instrument to hedge their FX risk. “Those with higher FX volumes would conduct such activity through an online FX or cash management platform. Today, most banks offer an in-house cash management platform that offers an integrated view across multiple products such as fixed deposits, loans, deposits and FX. Such platforms can help SME customers effectively manage their FX activities, and are gaining popularity,” reckons Teo.

Customized service models Apart from transactions in different currencies, another challenge is that corporate treasurers and financial controllers across Asia are of course at varying levels of maturity when it comes to managing their foreign exchange exposure across different markets. So could customizing their sales and service models be the best solution for banks to cater to the different needs in the market? ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 47


OPINION

DARREN WEBB

What to expect of the banking sector by 2020

DARREN WEBB Managing Director, Pacific, Cable&Wireless Worldwide their trust and build lasting customer loyalty. Mobile banking is expected to become a key battleground in the retail banking sector. As technology matures, banks will be expected to offer even more banking services on-the-go to increasingly tech-savvy customers. Security is the most important consideration as virtual platforms rapidly replace traditional branch banking behaviours. Assuring the sanctity of every transaction and ensuring that customers are not compromised while using any of the multimedia portals is a key requirement from technology and network service providers serving banks today. However, this is a journey that has to be made – both for the provider and the bank.

Vast changes loom

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he banking sector of 2020 will look vastly different from what it is today – and network service providers have a critical role to play in enabling banks to make the transition to the future. The International Monetary Fund estimates that global banks lost more than $1 trillion on toxic investments following the Great Financial Crisis of 2008 and the on-going Euro Debt crisis. Banks suffered significant reputational harm following the global financial crisis. According to the Edelman Trust Barometer, the Financial Services and Banking industry remains the least trusted in the world. In order to tackle this challenge, the banking sector is becoming more agile, customer focused and tech-savvy. Consequently, network service providers need to scale up the services they offer to enable banks to connect with their customers where they are and how they want to be engaged with. The crisis has prompted progressive banks to take a ‘back to basics’ approach by focusing on longer-term goals, such as offering customers value for money, satisfaction, and access to their bank and cash 24/7. Network service providers have to transform the nature of services they offer – from pure connectivity to value added services that enable banks to make this transformation. Go online – and social, and mobile Over the past decade, banks have done a stellar job in delivering the convenience of internet banking to consumers globally. To stay relevant, banks are now required to step further into cyberspace and fully engage with their consumers over social media and mobile platforms to regain

48 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

What about Cloud? While most banks are actively exploring the possibilities that Cloud Computing offers by way of agility and costefficiency, they are also treading with caution as they wait for further clarity on cloud computing regulations. One of the more promising starting points for banks wanting to adopt cloud service is perhaps the “hybrid” cloud model (a cloud computing environment that comprises on-premise private and off-premise private or public cloud implementation). A hybrid cloud offering brings together the flexibility and increased efficiency offered by managed hosting, multi-tenant and private cloud deployments, whilst still protecting certain extremely sensitive data. It enables financial institutions to keep sensitive data confidential while benefitting from reduced cost and complexity. Network service provider partners are being challenged to offer their Banking and Financial Services customers a solution that ensures the integrity of the trusted legacy systems while exploring cloud-based services for less sensitive and newer business areas. Pursing long-term goals The successful bank of 2020 will be driven by longer-term goals, including a relentless focus on giving customers better value and service for money. Banks are going to have to adopt a much more agile and responsive IT and communications platform. Banks will need technology-agnostic partners that can help them navigate a path to finding an optimal communications and IT model that works for their businesses. Heading towards 2020, the challenge for network service providers is to invest into value-added communications solutions, which are highly secure and compliant while offering their banking customers a fast, responsive and trusted platform to serve their end-consumers effectively.


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ONLINE SECURITIES PLATFORM OF THE YEAR SINGAPORE, OCBC SECURITIES

Smarter Trading on-the-go with our award-winning TradeMobile App

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ne of the key thrusts of OCBC Securities has been focused on bridging the gaps of traditional online trading to provide investors with more investment options to capture market opportunities with Speed, Convenience and Accessibility. Breaking the traditional online trading The key aspect found lacking in traditional Browser-Based online trading is that it typically confines investors to their workstations. In this day and age where time is of the essence and individuals need to constantly commute frequently from one place to another, it is increasingly important that we deliver a product or service that reflects and complements the demands and lifestyles of today’s investors. iOCBC TradeMobile comes with a Mr Raymond Chee, Managing Director of OCBC Securities Private Limited solution that allows investors to keep abreast of market situations, monitor and manage investors are presented with different Management’ were added as a result of acting investment opportunities across countries on constructive feedback. their investments on the go. Said Mr Raymond Chee, Managing The application-based platform also and markets. iOCBC TradeMobile provides more room for intuitively, a smarter gives investors the capability to capture Director of OCBC Securities, “We thank our and sleeker interface and a no frills, hassle- opportunities and execute online transactions customers for their feedback and support free trading experience. Investors can also across 14 global securities exchanges in an over the years. They have helped along be assured that their trades are executed in a instant. Most of these global markets are through the journey of improvement for our trading platform. We are encouraged by this connected to iOCBC via DMA. timely and secured manner. DMA is the ability to trade directly into Online Securities Platform of the Year Award iOCBC TradeMobile was first launched on a market. The majority of and will continuously strive to innovate and the iPhone in 2010. financial exchanges are now differentiate our products and services.” Today, iOCBC TradeMobile iOCBC TradeMobile has evolved and gone through comes with a solution electronic and some may several rounds of enhancements. that allows investors mistake DMA as simply the Important Notes ability to trade on foreign Trading in securities is very risky, and you may lose all The App is now available across to keep abreast of or more than the amount invested or deposited. Where exchanges online. a comprehensive suite of mobile market situations, In fact, DMA goes one step necessary, please seek advice from an independent platforms such as the iPad, monitor and manage BlackBerry, and Android-based their investments on further by allowing investors financial adviser regarding the suitability of any trade or to trade as equal market investment product taking into account your investment devices. the go. objectives, financial situation or particular needs participants without manual before making a commitment to trade or purchase the According to a survey by an independent research firm based intervention. A broker is still required, but investment product. You should consider carefully and in Singapore, 88% of mobile phones in by providing DMA, the broker makes a exercise caution in making any trading decision whether Singapore are smartphones, which is one of professional electronic network available or not you have received advice from any financial adviser. the highest smartphones penetration and to the retail investor to execute trades personally. In short, DMA to financial adoption rates in the world. CONTACT Further, with the Singapore market now markets allows Retail and Private Investors ready to embrace 4G Long Term Evolution the level of efficiency and control enjoyed OCBC SECURITIES (LTE) technologies; we anticipate more mostly by Financial Institutions. 18 Church Street #01-00, OCBC Centre South investors will use this channel for information Phone Number: 6535 2882 Listening to Customers’ Needs sourcing as well as to trade. Fax Number: 6534 0025 Listening to customers’ needs has played cs@ocbcsec.com Leveraging on Direct Market Access an important role in the development of www.iocbc.com iOCBC TradeMobile. Several new features (DMA) capabilities As global markets continue to evolve, such as ‘Setting SMS Alerts’, and ‘Portfolio 50 ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012

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TRADE ACROSS

14 MARKETS ON THE GO

TradeMobile

Download the iOCBC TradeMobile App on your iPhone, iPad, BlackBerry or Android devices today.

iOCBC TradeMobile lets you capture market opportunities on the go with convenience, speed and accessibility. This is why we have been recognised as the Online Securities Platform of the Year in Singapore for 2012 by Asian Banking & Finance. To know more, register your interest to attend an exclusive seminar on the iOCBC platform. SMS <ABF> space <NAME> space <EMAIL ADD> to 76999. Trade globally with confidence via iOCBC. For more information, contact your trading representatives, call our hotline at 1800 338 8688 or visit www.iocbc.com today.

Important Notes

Trading in securities is very risky, and you may lose all or more than the amount invested or deposited. Where necessary, please seek advice from an independent financial adviser regarding the suitability of any trade or investment product taking into account your investment objectives, financial situation or particular needs before making a commitment to trade or purchase the investment product. You should consider carefully and exercise caution in making any trading decision whether or not you have received advice from any financial adviser. ASIAN BANKING AND FINANCE | OCTOBER 2012 51 Co.Reg.No: 196600262R


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Asian Banking and Finance