BPI focuses on enabling SMEs in Cebu & Visayas region

The Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) is focusing on enabling the growing small and medium enterprises (SMEs) sector in Cebu and the Visayas region. In 2018, BPI expanded its reach to the Northern and Southern parts of Cebu with the opening of new branches in Bogo, Toledo and Carcar. In 2019, BPI will open more branches in Cebu City, plus a few more branches in nearby areas such as Tacloban, Tagbilaran and Ormoc.

BPI is keen on tapping opportunities in the booming construction industry in Cebu and in the Visayas region. The vibrant tourism industry is also promising, with a combined 9.8 million tourist arrivals in Western and Central Visayas. The growing agriculture industry is also an opportunity for potential clients in the piggery, poultry and aquaculture business.

“Cebu continues to be one of our key markets in the Philippines as it accounts for 54% of the whole Visayas-Mindanao business, while the whole of Visayas accounts for 60% of the whole VisMin business,” said BPI President and CEO Cezar P. Consing.

More branches will be opening in Cebu City as well as the nearby areas, and will be complemented by technology investments as BPI works towards digitalization. This will help retail clients, and SMEs in a more efficient way and provide more access to relevant financial solutions.

BPI has allocated about six to seven percent of revenues for the ongoing digitalization efforts, with additional investments to grow and transform the organization to align to how people consume banking services now and in the future.

Enhancing the Growth Potential of SMEs

In 2018, BPI established the Business Banking Segment to cater to the SMEs. According to Junie Veloso, Head of the newly formed segment, majority of their SME clients, including those in Cebu, have not yet availed of loans. Most of them only have deposits.

We believe that SMEs play a key role in nation building. The Cebu SME market has a huge growth
potential and we want to be there when it happens. Our clients can expect new loan products that will make use of a new score card for faster loan processing and approvals. We continue to make enhancements on our processes. We’re looking at a 30-day turnaround time for standard applications, and even faster for certain products,” said Veloso.

To help make this possible, BPI has engaged a risk management firm, Tongdun International, to implement artificial intelligence solutions that will result in faster automated lending processes and an optimized credit scoring model.

Engaging more large firms

Cebu is an important hub for BPI as it supports VisMin-based businesses who are growing in the region and are expanding nationally. Just like the SME business, the corporate segment holds potential for other services that are largely untapped by many large corporations.

We hope to continue and maintain our leading position in the corporate segment, and work with more large local and global corporations. We also aim to make a positive business impact on these companies by providing relevant solutions that go beyond credit and cash management. We are committed to help our clients accelerate their business and achieve their goals," said John-C Syquia, BPI Corporate Clients Segment Head.

Cebu based content creators and business tri-media journalists
Bank of the Philippine Islands most recent performance:

A 167 year-old bank in the Philippines and South East Asia has posted Php6.07 billion in net income in the fourth quarter of 2018, up 13.0% from Php5.37 billion in the same period of 2017, on the back of strong revenues which grew 20.4%. Net interest income rose by 19.4% while non-interest income increased by 22.6%.

Full year net income reached Php23.08 billion or 3.0% up versus 2017. Comprehensive income was at Php21.88 billion. Total revenues increased by 10.6% to Php78.52 billion, driven by 16.2% growth in net interest income, which reached Php55.84 billion.

Total loans stood at Php1.35 trillion, reflecting a 12.7% growth year-on-year, boosted by strong growth in corporate loans and credit card loans at 13.3% and 23.8%, respectively. Total deposits reached Php1.59 trillion, up by 1.5%, with current and savings accounts (CASA) growing at 2.4%.

The Bank registered higher fee income from its transaction-based service charges, credit card and rental businesses. However, lower trust and investment management fees, corporate finance fees, and
securities trading income tempered the overall non-interest income results, ending at Php22.68 billion.

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BPI focuses on enabling SMEs in Cebu & Visayas region BPI focuses on enabling SMEs in Cebu & Visayas region Reviewed by Vernon Joseph Go on Wednesday, March 06, 2019 Rating: 5

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