BANKING NEWS FLASH April 01, 2014
Table of Contents Sales & Marketing ................................................................................................................. 3 Finance ................................................................................................................................. 7 Technology .......................................................................................................................... 11 Strategy .............................................................................................................................. 15
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Sales & Marketing Equity Bank and VFX team on UK to Kenya direct money transfer service April 01, 2014 | Finextra http://www.finextra.com/news/announcement.aspx?pressreleaseid=54634 Equity Bank Group in Kenya and VFX Financial PLC in the UK have partnered to launch Equity Direct a real-time, cross border, multicurrency money transfer service from the UK to Kenya. The service will enable individuals and corporates in the UK to send money to any account at Equity Bank in the region. The service can be conveniently accessed online through a secure portal. The platform offers very competitive foreign exchange rates with a very affordable cost of money transfer. Senders from the UK will enjoy the choice of sending money back to Kenya in major world currencies including EUR, GBP and USD. Equity Direct is an online money transfer service that has three main advantages, it is very affordable, it is convenient as one can send money anytime from the comfort of their homes or offices as long as they have online access, and thirdly, the delivery is real time. It will cost only 4GBP to send USD 10,000 from the UK to Kenya. "We are delighted to deliver such a convenient and transparent low cost remittance solution which results in more money arriving to Kenya from the UK faster and easily" said Nick England, CEO of VFX. He further added; "The uptake of Equity Direct during the pilot phase has been very high. UK residents have been able to remit millions of shillings in the last three months of piloting. We therefore are positive this is what the market has been waiting for. A low cost remittance solution. Mr. England further said that VFX has ensured that Equity Direct is flexible enough to allow low remittance of £10 and below. To open an Equity Direct account, register online at www.equitydirect.co.ke Only UK residents can register as remittance is from UK to KE and not vice versa. Those who wish to send money to Kenya from the UK and don't have an Equity Bank account shall be facilitated to open the accounts by VFX in the UK. Transaction fees start at £1 with a maximum fee of £4, and there are no deductions or charges on arrival at the Equity Bank account. The costs and exchange rates are clearly displayed for customers to see prior to a transaction - providing a level of transparency rarely seen in Money Transfer. "Equity Bank is a key player in facilitating remittance to Kenya. We waWe want our customers in and out of the country to have the different options of remittance that is most convenient to them," said Dr. James Mwangi, Group CEO Equity Bank.
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"Equity Direct is focusing on the UK market as UK is one of key remittance corridors for Kenya. Equity Group has invested heavily in creating infrastructure for diaspora remittances, and banking and transaction processing by connecting to all global payment systems as a result of installing a robust system that allows for the innovation of products and services that deliver convenience and affordability to our customers both locally and abroad. Currently, Equity Bank is controlling 16% of all Diaspora remittances and we are working towards scaling this up. We shall therefore continue to seek strategic partnerships that give our customers in the Diaspora choices in money transfer. We see Equity Direct as democratizing money remittance by enabling cheap and instant money transfer direct into the beneficiaries account," he added Equity Direct connects through VFX's proprietary digital payment gateway, "MoBe HUB", which enables instant credits in customers accounts in Equity Bank. VFX is also able to assist in the opening of Equity Bank diaspora accounts for non-resident Kenyans living overseas. The service will benefit residents of the UK importing goods from Kenya because they can now pay for their goods directly and instantly into an Equity Bank account of their suppliers. At the same time, family members living in the UK can send money home to their loved ones, or to their own bank accounts in Equity Bank instantly.
WU, Farmacias Guadalajara launch global money transfer services in Mexico March 28, 2014 | BBR http://payments.banking-business-review.com/news/wu-farmacias-guadalajara-launch-globalmoney-transfer-services-in-mexico-280314-4205154 Western Union (WU), a global payment services provider, in partnership with Farmacias Guadalajara has launched its money-transfer services at more than 1,100 drugstore and retail locations across Mexico. The recent launch strengthens Western Union agent network in Mexico, while enabling consumers to receive money even more conveniently from their family and friends throughout the world. Western Union Mexico vice president and general manager Luis Felipe Rodriguez Vega said, "Thanks to a successful collaboration with Farmacias Guadalajara, Western Union continues to give consumers even more options to receive global money transfers in-country. "This launch is another example of our commitment to growing our Agent network in Mexico -- one of the top remittance receiving countries in the world." A research report by the World Bank underlines that Mexico ranks fourth on the list of top worldwide recipients of remittances for 2013, receiving an estimated $22bn per year. Farmacias Guadalajara said that its locations are open to customers seven days a week.
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Bank Negara Malaysia announces new timeline for pricing strategy for cheques March 21, 2014 | BBR http://payments.banking-business-review.com/news/bank-negara-malaysia-announces-newtimeline-for-pricing-strategy-for-cheques-210314-4201304 Bank Negara Malaysiaâ€™s (BNM) new pricing for cheques will now take effect from 2 January 2015 due to the delay in availability of necessary devices. The bank has unveiled the new pricing strategy for payment services in March this year in a move to address price distortion between electronic payments and paper-based payments. Under the new pricing strategy for cheques, a new processing fee of MYR0.5 ($0.15) will be imposed. Originally, the new cheque processing fee was to take effect from 1 April 2014. According to BNM, the required devices need to be in place to facilitate a comprehensive acceptance of e-payments particularly to enable a comprehensive acceptance of e-payments particularly, at the federal and state government agencies across the country. The new pricing strategy also caps the fee for Interbank GIRO (IBG) transaction through Internet and mobile banking at MYR0.1 ($0.03), effective 2 May 2013.
Orange Polska, mBank to launch new mobile retail bank March 21, 2014 | BBR http://retailbanking.banking-business-review.com/news/orange-polska-mbank-to-launch-newmobile-retail-bank-210314-4201042 Orange Polska, the Poland division of telecom giant Orange, has partnered with Commerzbankâ€™s mBank to launch a mobile retail bank. The new mobile retail bank, which will operate under the Orange brand, will be available for users of smartphones and tablets in the second half of 2014. Services to be offered by the mobile bank include mobile payments, loans, current accounts, deposits, as well as credit and debit cards for both individual and companies. While Orange will manage marketing and acquisition of customers for the joint venture, mBank will provide banking services and establish a new division within the bank's structure. Earlier, Orange and mBank had joined hands with MasterCard to launch a commerical NFC-based payment service in 2012.
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Indiaâ€™s Federal Bank launches new overdraft facility Fed Rise March 19, 2014 | BBR http://www.banking-business-review.com/news/indias-federal-bank-launches-new-overdraftfacility-fed-rise-190314-4199266 India-based Federal Bank has rolled out Fed Rise, a new loan product which is claimed to be first-ofits-kind facility in the banking sector. As an overdraft facility against recurring deposits, Fed Rise, offers improved operational comfort and flexibility to the customers. Under the new facility, the bank will sanction 90% of the maturity value of the recurring deposit simultaneously as an overdraft limit at the time of opening. In addition, 90% of the balance (inclusive of interest) in the deposit can be withdrawn by the customer at any point of time. As the customer makes payment to the recurring deposit account, the drawing power rises, the bank said in a statement. Speaking about Fed Rise, Federal Bank Retail Banking division head and GM A Surendran said, "Fed Rise is going to be a trend setter and a sought after loan product owing to the operational ease it offers as a result of automatic placement of funds at the client's disposal.
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Finance FCA fines Santander UK ÂŁ12.4m over flawed investment advice March 27, 2014 | BBR http://assetmanagement.banking-business-review.com/news/fca-fines-santander-uk-124m-overflawed-investment-advice-270314-4204268 The UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has fined a monetary penalty of nearly ÂŁ12.5m against Santander UK, for offering flawed investment advices to its customers. The fine, which is being imposed on the retail banking firm, comes after the completion of one yearlong FCA probe into a "mystery shopping" exercise across the UK's banking sector. During the investigation, the UK's watchdog found that Santander UK failed to ensure that its customers were given clear and not misleading information about its products and services, as well as to carry out regular ongoing checks for premium investments to ensure the investment was still meeting customer needs. Furthermore, the bank also failed to properly monitor the quality of investment advice which meant that, where poor advice was given, it was not always picked up. FCA enforcement and financial crime director Tracey McDermott said, "Customers trusted Santander to help them manage their money wisely, but it failed to live up to that responsibility. "If trust in financial services is going to be restored, which it must be, then customers need to be confident that those advising them understand, and are driven by, what they need. Santander let its customers down badly." Under the terms of the settlement with the FCA, Santander UK has agreed to contact all affected customers and, for any sales that were sub-standard, redress will be paid where due. Santander temporarily suspended the sale of investment products last year and it might have overhauled its advice service in response to the findings of the exercise, which concluded in December 2012. The lender, which boosted its presence by purchasing Abbey, Alliance & Leicester and Bradford & Bingley, had announced that it was ceasing its investment advice arm to new customers. Santander UK reached the settlement at an early stage of the investigation, and availed 30% discount; otherwise the penalty would have been ÂŁ17,682,730.
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Credit Suisse agrees to pay $885m to settle mortgage litigation March 24, 2014 | BBR http://retailbanking.banking-business-review.com/news/credit-suisse-agrees-to-pay-885m-tosettle-mortgage-litigation-240314-4201800 Credit Suisse has agreed to pay $885m to the US Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), to resolve all claims pertaining to the alleged violations of federal and state securities laws in connection with private-label mortgage-backed securities (PLS). Credit The faulty PLS worth $16.6bn was purchased by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac during 2005-2007, according to the settlement. As per terms of the settlement, Credit Suisse will reimburse nearly $234m to Fannie Mae and about $651m to Freddie Mac while certain claims against Credit Suisse related to the securities involved will be released. As the settlement was signed before the company filed financial results for 2013, Credit Suisse said it would take a related charge of CHF275m ($312m) for 2013. The recent deal with Credit Suisse marks the ninth settlement FHFA has reached in relation to the 18 PLS lawsuits it filed in 2011 against banks that marketed over $200bn in bonds to Fannie and Freddie by giving materially false statements about the quality of mortgages. Both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac went bankrupt during the financial crisis of 2008, due to the high exposure of faulty residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) and were subsequently injected with nearly $187.5bn by the US government to keep them running. In connection with the sale of faulty RMBS, UBS has paid $885m, Citigroup $250m, Deutsche Bank $1.9bn, and JPMorgan Chase reimbursed $4bn, according to the FHFA. Furthermore, the FHFA signed its tenth settlement valued at $335m with Wells Fargo.
Societe Generale to increase shareholding in Franceâ€™s Boursorama March 19, 2014 | BBR http://onlinebanking.banking-business-review.com/news/societe-generale-to-increaseshareholding-in-frances-boursorama-190314-4199130 Societe Generale (SocGen) is planning to file a takeover offer for free-floating shares of its online banking brand Boursorama, valuing the company at â‚Ź1.05bn. Deal This move comes on heels of the bank's latest concerting shareholders agreement with Caixa Group. Currently, SocGen and Caixa Group hold 56% and 21% of Boursorama respectively.
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The proposed takeover offer will target the shares that are neither owned by SocGen nor Caixa Group. SocGen said it will file an offer of â‚Ź12 per share through French Financial markets authority (AMF) for about 23% of minority holding. According to SocGen, the bid for the French online bank brand Boursorama is part of the company's strategy to pursue its development in this market. The takeover offer which is expected to open during May 2014 will be followed by a squeeze out process, should minority shareholders, excluding Caixa Group, hold less than 5% interest in Boursorama. Boursorama, which was created in 1995, currently has 500,000 clients in France. The company also has international operations in the UK, Germany and Spain.
Citi fined for short-selling violations March 18, 2014 | Finextra http://www.finextra.com/news/announcement.aspx?pressreleaseid=54436 The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and BATS Exchange1, Inc. announced today that they have jointly ordered Citigroup Global Markets Inc. to pay approximately $1.1 million in connection with short selling ahead of participating in five public offerings of securities, in violation of Rule 105 of Regulation M. The payments include the disgorgement of more than $538,000, plus interest, of profits and improper financial benefits, and approximately $559,000 in fines. Citigroup also violated supervisory requirements related to Rule 105; and as part of the sanction, the firm was ordered to update its written supervisory procedures for Rule 105 compliance. Rule 105 of Regulation M under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 generally prohibits buying securities in secondary offerings when the purchaser sold short the security that is the subject of the offering during a specific restricted period - typically five business days - before the secondary offering is priced. From May 26, 2009, to September 21, 2010, Citigroup sold securities short within the five business days leading up to the pricing of five public offerings in those securities, and then purchased securities in those offerings. Citigroup purchased a total of more than 1.5 million shares after having sold short 313,890 shares of the securities within the five business days leading up to the offerings. Thomas Gira, FINRA Executive Vice President, Market Regulation, said, "Rule 105 of Regulation M remains vital to protecting the integrity of the offering process by prohibiting firms from engaging in certain prohibited activities before the pricing of secondary offerings. FINRA will continue to aggressively monitor firms for adherence to Rule 105's requirements and adequate supervisory systems to ensure such compliance." In concluding this settlement, Citigroup neither admitted nor denied the charges, but consented to the entry of FINRA and BATS' findings.
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1. The settlement with BATS will become final and conclusive on April 9, 2014, unless called for review pursuant to BATS Rule 8.10(c).
Lloyds to raise SME lending to ÂŁ1bn in 2014 March 17, 2014 | BBR http://retailbanking.banking-business-review.com/news/lloyds-to-raise-sme-lending-to-1bn-in2014-170314 Lloyds Banking Group is reportedly planning to increase its lending to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to ÂŁ1bn in 2014 as the UK economy recovers. The bank will also double the lending amount by its local bank managers without the approval from central office to ÂŁ1m, a move aimed at ensuring quick lending decisions. Lloyds SME and mid markets banking managing director Tim Hinton said, "We are now seeing the recovery gathering pace and there are more reasons for small and medium-sized enterprises to be optimistic and to start investing for growth." The development comes after a recent inquiry launched by the UK politicians into the lending practices of banks to SMEs.
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Technology Novum Bank goes live on Carta payment processing platform April 01, 2014 | Finextra http://www.finextra.com/news/announcement.aspx?pressreleaseid=54642 Next-generation transaction technology provider Carta Worldwide announced today that Germany's Novum Bank is now live on Carta's processing platform. Carta is providing Novum with a fully configurable and customizable platform that delivers unparalleled efficiency, stability and security. As of today, Novum Bank has switched its entire prepaid card portfolio over to Carta's next-gen global transaction processor. Traditionally the process of migrating an entire card portfolio to a new processor would require significant time and cost. However with Carta's technology, Novum completed the processor transition seamlessly within a week with no service disruption for cardholders, who are able to retain existing plastics. Novum Bank CEO Michael Warrington noted, "Novum Bank selected Carta Worldwide after an intensive selection process because it felt that Carta could service its growing business requirements. Novum looked for a partner that is reliable and had the expertise to match our long term business vision." Carta CEO Brian Semkiw commented, "Novum is a very important client for us. The speed with which Novum and Carta were able to migrate from a legacy processor -- to complete this entire process in days -- is far from standard in the industry. We look forward to continuing to deliver market leading solutions with Novum, along with technology innovation for the next wave of mobile and digital payment products." Carta's platform has been engineered to leverage its clients' existing infrastructure and evolve to meet the complexities of modern payment applications. This platform architecture is both mobile and digital transaction ready. Carta's future-proof functionality enables ongoing program innovation for Novum Bank.
International Bank of Qatar selects Fiserv to support compliance and growth March 28, 2014 | BBR http://commercialbanking.banking-business-review.com/news/international-bank-of-qatarselects-fiserv-to-support-compliance-and-growth-280314-4205636 Fiserv has announced that the International Bank of Qatar (IBQ), has selected the Financial Crime Risk Management (FCRM) Platform from Fiserv to manage its money-laundering and fraud prevention strategy.
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"The bank is growing rapidly and we know that a comprehensive and adaptable fraud and compliance solution is vital to sustainable growth and satisfying regulatory requirements," said Basil Falah, Head of Compliance, International Bank of Qatar. "Fiserv offers IBQ a single solution with a single database to manage all financial crime risk. It is fully equipped with a unique level of flexibility and independence to add or change scenarios in response to ever-changing crime threats." For IBQ, the vast global experience of Fiserv in mitigating risk related to financial crime was a key factor in the selection. With more than 1,000 financial institutions already using the FCRM Platform worldwide, this knowledge and experience is a vital component of the partnership to help the bank achieve the highest standards of anti-money laundering (AML) compliance and fraud prevention. "Strong local and global references were vital in helping us make our decision," said Falah. "Fiserv is a well-established global provider of financial services technology and will be a reliable long-term partner as IBQ expands its operations in the coming years." "Fiserv forged a close working relationship with IBQ during the selection process and we look forward to building on that relationship as we go through implementation and beyond," said Tom Tobin, vice president and general manager, Financial Crime Risk Management, Fiserv. "By providing clients like IBQ with international industry best practices and expert consultants, we can ultimately put them in control of continually evaluating and optimizing their own risk protection as their operations expand and new threats are identified." The FCRM Platform provides unique abilities for financial crime professionals to effectively and efficiently model, detect, investigate and resolve risks across crimes, channels and product lines. It does so through complex event processing capabilities, designed to address each financial institution's unique and evolving set of financial crime threats and business requirements. Fiserv is trusted to securely process billions of payments every year and to protect the security and integrity of customer accounts, access channels and financial transactions. Fiserv global systems and services for account processing, payments processing and digital banking are used to manage and access more than 55 million consumer accounts and process transactions totaling over $1 trillion per year. As part of this ecosystem, the FCRM Platform is a logical choice for supporting regulatory compliance and fraud prevention.
Thames Card Technology inks EMV migration deal with Ghana Commercial Bank March 24, 2014 | BBR http://bankingtechnology.banking-business-review.com/news/thames-card-technology-inks-emvmigration-deal-with-ghana-commercial-bank-240314-4202155 Thames Card Technology (TCT), a UK's largest manufacturers of secure and non-secure plastic cards, , has won a competitive tender to be the sole supplier for the production, personalisation and distribution of one million EMV chip payment cards for Ghana Commercial Bank. Thames will also offer its portfolio of consultancy services to support GCB Ltd. in its transfer to EMV over the next three years, in addition to working closely with the bank and its processor, International Card Processing Services (ICPS), to streamline integration with international payment systems.
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Following consultation with Thames, GCB Ltd. is deploying its first commercial EMV products in anticipation of an October 2015 mandate from MasterCard and Visa requiring all Ghanaian banks to migrate to dynamic data authentication (DDA) capable cards. DDA provides protection against the modification of data and card cloning and is the most sophisticated EMV authentication protocol available today. Samuel Sarpong, CTO at Ghana Commercial Bank Ltd., comments: "As the bank with the largest branch & ATM network in Ghana, we are working hard to stay ahead of the curve in the fight against payment fraud in Africa. EMV migration DDA mandates have been set for 2015 and Thames Card Technology will be central to our success in meeting these deadlines. It was of paramount importance that we found a partner with the ability to manage every stage of the card production process. Thames' full service offering, technical expertise and international experience of taking customers through EMV migration made it the ideal partner to help us deliver added payment security to our two million account holders." Thames will manufacture nine different EMV cards for GCB Ltd., 'standard', 'gold', 'corporate' and 'private' for both MasterCard and Visa customers, in addition to a private label card for the bank, called 'Ready Cash'. "We have a proven track record in supporting EMV implementations and look forward to guiding GCB Ltd. through this process," comments Paul Underwood, Managing Director of Thames Card Technology. "GCB Ltd. is at the forefront of the Ghanaian banking market, and with their plans to migrate all card holders onto EMV technology by the end of 2015 I am sure other financial institutions in Ghana, and surrounding countries, will be looking to follow suit." As part of the migration process Thames has established a secure connection to GCB Ltd's payments processor, ICPS, which handles the payments processing for numerous banks across East and West Africa. Roshaan Kulpoo, General Manager of ICPS Ltd., comments: "This initial collaboration with Thames Card Technology provides a strong basis for future business initiatives on the continent." Commenting on the new relationship with ICPS, Underwood adds: "We are now in a strong position to similarly assist the region's other financial institutions looking to provide their customers with a more secure and reliable solution." EMV is a global standard for credit and debit payment cards based on secure chip technology. More than eighty countries worldwide have adopted, or are adopting, EMV, in order to increase transaction security, reduce fraud, enable cardholders to execute payments worldwide and take advantage of a payments infrastructure capable of supporting a variety of new value added applications. This announcement follows news in January that Thames has secured growth capital investment of ÂŁ3.2m from independent UK investment firm, BGF. Underwood concludes: "Banking in the developing world is gathering serious momentum. The investment from BGF is enabling us to deliver our trademark quality of service to customers further afield than ever before."
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Czech retail bank Ceska Sporitelna taps FICO Analytics March 21, 2014 | BBR http://bankingtechnology.banking-business-review.com/news/czech-retail-bank-ceska-sporitelnataps-fico-analytics-210314-4201085 Czech retail bank Ceska Sporitelna has selected FICO optimization tools and methodologies to improve the portfolio profit for its cash loan range. FICO's strategies will provide enhanced offers relating to lending amount and price for both existing and new clients. The Czech bank plans to begin testing the new strategy this summer. Ceska Sporitelna head of risk Petr Kapoun said the new solution enables the bank to further strengthen its position by adapting offerings to meet customers' individual needs. "The FICO solution convinced us because it uses comprehensive simulations that show the effect of different strategies on KPIs, providing insights into the profit drivers of our portfolios," Kapoun added Among the FICO's tools selected by Ceska is FICO Decision Optimizer, a flexible, easy-to-use business analyst tool that provides an offline scenario analysis and optimization environment that can quickly output decision strategies ready for implementation into the bank's existing systems
CommBank rolls out new mobile analytics app Daily IQ March 17, 2014 | BBR http://bankingtechnology.banking-business-review.com/news/commbank-rolls-out-new-mobileanalytics-app-daily-iqCommonwealth Bank (CommBank) has launched a new mobile analytics app, Daily IQ, to provide business customers with access to insights about the bankâ€™s cash flow, sales and the market. The new app uses transaction data to give tailored analytics to customers across three core areas cash flow, merchant insights and customer insights. CommBank Corporate Banking Solutions acting executive general manager Gary Roach said business analytics have often been the domain of larger companies, due to the investment involved in accessing multiple data sources. "Now with Daily IQ, all businesses can have access to tailored insights in one convenient location," Roach noted. CommBank's Daily IQ will deliver competitive advantage to business customers, while enhancing their performance. The Daily IQ app is available as a free value-add platform to CommBiz customers, and can be downloaded by iPad users from the App Store.
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Strategy China Development Bank and Société Générale boost commercial relationships March 31, 2014 | BBR http://commercialbanking.banking-business-review.com/news/china-development-bank-andsocit-gnrale-boost-commercial-relationships-310314-4205849 China Development Bank and Société Générale have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) as part of their strategy to strengthen their future commercial cooperation. The memorandum has been signed by Huaibang Hu, chairman of the Board of Directors of China Development Bank, and Frédéric Oudéa, chairman and CEO of Société Générale. The French bank believes that the MoU will enable both organizations to benefit from each other's capabilities in reciprocal financing and funding as well as each other's fields of expertise including retail banking, capital markets and structured finance on a global basis. In order to further boost their strategic partnership, both institutions have agreed to start cooperation in Africa where Société Générale has a strong footprint and this initiative could be extended to other geographies. Société Générale chairman and CEO Frédéric Oudéa said, "We are delighted with this agreement and we look forward to strengthening our commercial relationships with China Development Bank, one of the largest development banks in the world." "Leveraging on our respective international reach, both our financial services will be connected across regions to better serve clients and projects."
BBVA establishes digital banking division March 25, 2014 | BBR http://bankingtechnology.banking-business-review.com/news/bbva-establishes-digital-bankingdivision-to-transform-organization-250314-4202648 Spain's Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria (BBVA) has formed a new digital banking division, as part of its strategy to accelerate the group's transformation and boost development of new digital businesses. The new Digital Banking business, which will be led by Carlos Torres Vila, will be in charge of all commercial offerings, the multi-channel strategy, the distribution model and the design of commercial and operational processes. Furthermore, the division will be accountable to develop new business lines, while integrating internal developments such as Wizzo with the bank's startup investments involving BBVA Ventures and the acquisition of companies such as Simple.
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In order to attain its goals, Digital Banking will develop a culture that reflects active execution and the management of projects through small autonomous teams, incorporating internal and external talent. Launch of Digital Banking marks the start of second phase of the group's transformation after completing the development of the new technological platforms. BBVA is also creating a new division that includes South America and the global retail business lines, which will be led by Ignacio Deschamps. Cristina de Parias joins the Executive Committee as head of Spain and Portugal. BBVA chairman Francisco Gonzรกlez said, "The new structure will be an important factor in converting an efficient and profitable analogue bank into a digital knowledge-services business. "After setting up the platforms, which are the foundations of our digital project, we can now accelerate the creation of new products and services for 21st century customers."
China central bank licenses ANZ for direct NZD-CNY trading March 24, 2014 | BBR http://ecnandexchanges.banking-business-review.com/news/china-central-bank-licenses-anz-fordirect-nzd-cny-trading-240314-4201842 The People's Bank of China has granted license to Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ) to operate as a market maker for NZD-CNY direct trading on the China Foreign Exchange Trading System. The permission, whereby ANZ China will act as market maker, follows an agreement between the New Zealand and Chinese Governments to enable banks to directly trade the two currencies. ANZ China CEO Dr Charles Li said, "Direct NZD-CNY trading has economic, trade and investment significance for both countries because it will improve trade flows and reduce costs for companies doing business between New Zealand and China. "As the largest bank in New Zealand with the largest footprint in China, we're in a unique position to really strengthen trade flows." On 1 October 2008, New Zealand and China reached a Free Trade Agreement (FTA), which marked New Zealand to be the first developed country to conclude an FTA with China. Moving forward, the agreement has enabled to remove various obstacles to trade and provide considerable benefit to both parties. ANZ New Zealand institutional managing director David Green stated, "As New Zealand's only bank with a presence in 29 markets across Asia Pacific, we are uniquely positioned to connect our customers across the region. "We're pleased to receive a license for direct CNY-NZD trading and we look forward to offering direct settlement to our customers in both markets."
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Having a presence in China since 1986, ANZ China currently operates offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chongqing, Hangzhou.
Banco del Tesoro to install 200 new CINEO ATMs from Wincor Nixdorf March 20, 2014 | BBR http://www.banking-business-review.com/news/banco-del-tesoro-to-install-200-new-cineo-atmsfrom-wincor-nixdorf-200314-4200453 Venezuela’s public bank Banco del Tesoro is set to install 200 new CINEO ATMs from Wincor Nixdorf by July 2014, a move which will double the bank’s ATM network. Wincor Nixdorf's multifunction systems allow customers to deposit cash and checks and process passbooks, along with cash withdrawal. Customers will also be able to use the systems for easy and quick bill payments by scanning in all invoice information via a barcode reader and acknowledging the credit transfer. Wincor Nixdorf will integrate the software for these services by this autumn. Banco del Tesoro's order with Wincor Nixdorf also includes software to enhance security and manage the systems. As part of the order, PC/E Terminal Security will be installed on all CINEO systems to protect selfservice systems against unauthorized access and viruses. For its IT service management, Banco del Tesoro has tapped ProView software which provides access to all relevant system software at any time and initiate service processes whenever required. Banco del Tesoro Operational Bank Services general manager Nancy Rojas said, "To grow and reach more customers, we are expanding our branch and self-service network. Wincor Nixdorf made us a compelling offer consisting of harmonized hardware and software that allows us to provide optimal customer service."
DBS to acquire Societe Generale’s private banking operations in Asia March 17, 2014 | BBR http://www.banking-business-review.com/news/dbs-to-acquire-societe-generales-privatebanking-operations-in-asia-170314 DBS Bank is set to acquire the Asian private banking operations of Societe Generale in Singapore and Hong Kong, along with certain parts of its trust business, in a $220m deal. The deal represents about 1.75% of assets under management based on Societe Generale Private Banking Asia's (SGPB Asia) assets under management of $12.6bn as of 31 December 2013. The acquisition will drive DBS' plans to fortify its position in wealth management in Asia, effectively increasing the bank's high net worth assets under management by over 20%.
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Following the transaction, SGPB Asia's clients will have access to DBS universal banking platform including retail, corporate and investment banking. Societe Generale's clients will also have access to DBS Private Bank's offering in Asia. In addition, through a memorandum of understanding, DBS' clients will have access to Societe Generale Private Banking's offering in Europe, along with Societe Generale's Corporate & Investment Banking solutions. DBS CEO Piyush Gupta said that acquiring Societe Generale's private banking franchise in Asia will strengthen the company's wealth management value proposition and further entrench its position as a leading bank in this region. "The transaction will create value for high net worth customers from both banks and present employees with expanded career development opportunities. "It is expected to be earnings accretive one year after completion, and we look forward to working closely with Societe Generale to ensure a seamless integration," Gupta noted. The deal is expected to close in the last quarter of 2014, subject to legal and regulatory approvals, as well as required customary closing conditions.
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