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PBB: Strengthening SMEs innovatively for 21 years

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For 21 years, Philippine Business Bank (PBB) has consistently been the bank of choice of the small and medium enterprises (SME) in the country for its wide portfolio of financial products and services apart from its visible presence in several commercial and industrial centers of the country.

Its lineup of products include commercial, industrial, and developmental loans, which mostly cater to the SME market segment; as well as consumer loans like auto, salary, and housing loans. PBB also offers various deposit and investment services.

After concluding 2017 with double-digit growth, PBB is moving forward this year, as it celebrates another anniversary milestone, with focus on consumer and SME financing as well as innovation in its line up of products and services.

According to John David D. Sison, PBB’s Corporate Planning Group and Investor Relations head, they see a lot of demand for these types of loan services.

“Last year, we did a lot of corporate accounts, a lot of deals in power and transportation with our involvement in RoRo companies. This year, the plan is to shift back to our bread and butter, which is our SME/commercial loans side,” said Mr. Sison, explaining that the yields in this segment are more attractive.

In terms of consumer financing, PBB aims to set up about 10 to 12 consumer finance centers around the country to bring this lending service closer to more Filipinos.

Along with strengthening this particular service, PBB also shared its initiative to transition from mostly just SME corporate business-related transactions to a more inclusive set of services by including loan products and services catering to secondhand auto, brand new cars, and real estate.

Mr. Sison also mentioned their plans to expand their digital space presence. “We’re putting in place little by little our personnel, and hopefully, the infrastructure to be developed by the different teams within the bank. We’re only starting to develop today, but assuming we’re able to iron that out and do it automated, where we are able to view their businesses on a dynamic basis, we will be much quicker.”

He added: “In terms of disbursing loans servicing clients, we will be faster as opposed to two to three weeks, which is as I understand, is the fastest in the industry, but we want to make it even faster with respect to how we service the needs of our clients.”

As a testament to its unparalleled financing solutions, through the years, PBB has received a number of awards. In 2013 and 2014 at the Wholesale Banking Awards in Singapore, it was recognized by the Asian Banking and Finance magazine as the Philippines Domestic Technology and Operations Bank of the Year for its ongoing innovation and excellence in development and delivery of modern technology solutions and customer service.

Also in 2014, PBB was awarded the Best Banking Technology Awards by London-based online magazine Global Banking & Finance Review. A year after at the Asian Banking Summit in Hong Kong, the Asian Banker Technology Implementation Awards gave PBB the Best Cloud Based Award. — Romsanne R. Ortiguero