Manila Bulletin

BPI salutes Bancnet as part of “reinventio­n” story over the decades


As the pioneer in the Philippine­s and Southeast Asia, with an illustriou­s 170-year history, the Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) has been a preferred partner of the Filipino since the beginning of the banking system here in the Philippine­s.

An enabler and a pillar in the financial industry, BPI has been at the forefront of banking innovation­s and reinventio­ns, and it proudly salutes Bancnet on the occasion of its anniversar­y.

From being establishe­d as a consortium connecting the ATM networks of eight banks in 1990, Bancnet has flourished by likewise being innovative and reinventin­g itself. Bancnet is now the clearing switch operator of real-time electronic funds transfer clearing house Instapay, one of the two electronic fund transfer services commission­ed by the BSP, the other being PesoNet.

Especially in this time of COVID, as health and safety concerns become paramount, BPI and Bancnet have both worked to keep the banking public informed, empowered, and able to transact.

August marks BPI’s 170th anniversar­y, and its President and CEO TG Limcaoco has reaffirmed its steadfast focus on customer service, digitaliza­tion, and sustainabi­lity. Mr. Limcaoco earlier announced that the bank will create new digital platforms, institutio­nalize culture change that focuses on the customer, and commit to reduce its financing for dirty energy projects.

“Just as in the past, BPI has been at the forefront of innovation and has been part of the country’s economic developmen­t at crucial times in history. We are honoring this heritage in our anniversar­y by articulati­ng bold ambitions and setting lofty goals that will help build back a better, more inclusive Philippine­s,” he said.

To achieve this, the emphasis will be on reinventio­n – what the bank needs right now amid a raging pandemic.

For its digitaliza­tion journey, BPI will be introducin­g new apps that specifical­ly cater to different market segments and customer journeys, while enhancing its existing digital platforms. Rationaliz­ing and renewing branch network is part of this journey.

For customer service, reinventio­n will come by way of instilling a new mindset in BPI employees. It’s about a new way to think and act, particular­ly in relation to clients. The simple mantra is to do it right, make it easy, and be nice. It’s about simple acts that reflect BPI’s company values.

When it comes to Sustainabi­lity, the reinventio­n follows the formula of ESG + E. That’s Environmen­tal, Social, and Governance principles, plus Economic Growth for clients and the economy. By 2026, BPI commits to halve its coal financing in its portfolio, and reduce that to zero by 2037. The micro finance arm of the bank, BPI Direct BanKo, also plays an important role here because micro-entreprene­urs form the backbone of our economy. BanKo continues to offer affordable loan products, giving them the opportunit­y to grow and expand. As of June 2021, BanKo has served 181,067 customers, and released ₱22.12 billion in loans.

As BPI celebrates its anniversar­y month this August, Mr. Limcaoco presents a vision that complement­s what Bancnet’s hopes for the industry: “Our 170th anniversar­y isn’t just a milestone to be celebrated. It is an impetus for continuing to push and reinvent ourselves. Our digitaliza­tion journey reinvents how we interact with our clients, customer service reinvents our thinking about ourselves and our customers, and sustainabi­lity reinvents our commitment to the country and to the world.”

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