Maybank reviews branch network, launches improved mobile app

Marianne Go - The Philippine Star
Maybank reviews branch network, launches improved mobile app
New president and CEO of Maybank Philippines Inc., Choong Wai Hong.
File photo

MANILA, Philippines — Maybank Philippines Inc. (MPI), the local unit of Malaysia’s largest financial group, is starting the Year of the Dog with a new president and plans to review its branch network and upgrade its virtual banking.

New president and CEO Choong Wai Hong, is eager to take on the challenge of steering the bank to further growth after MPI reported last week that its net profit for the first half of 2017 almost quadrupled to P830.9 million from P213.7 million a year earlier.

Profit before tax stood at P765.4 million, more than double the P377.2 million made in the same period in 2016.

MPI said the improved results were driven by sustained growth in its core business, complemented by better cost and asset quality management.

The bank was able to grow its loan portfolio by 10 percent to P63.8 billion, as well as its deposits to P79.9 billion or a 20 percent growth, despite what it acknowledged as a tough operating environment.

Loan growth was driven by higher yielding consumer segment, primarily auto loans, which expanded at a double-digit pace of 23 percent.

On the other hand, MPI was also able to keep a tight rein on its operating expenses.

Heading into the future, Choong revealed that the bank is in the process of reevaluating its existing branch network with the aim of possibly relocating some branches.

MPI currently has 74 branches, with 40 percent located in Metro Manila and 60 percent outside the metro.

The relocation of some branches would also involve the redesign of some branches to improve virtual banking facilities.

The branch reevaluation dovetails with the bank’s move to expand into the digital space with the introduction of its improved and more secure virtual banking app.

The new, improved features of the Maybank2U app which will be introduced in the next three to four months and will include the ability of bank clients to inquire about their account balance, consumer loan and credit card; pay bills; transfer funds in three ways and do prepaid reloads.

In line with the improved features of smartphones, the Maybank2U app would also now allow clients to log in to their accounts using their fingerprint aside from the previous picture and phrase security to ensure that the clients are using the correct website and are not on a phishing website.

Choong assured that they employ the best security in the country, using the client’s mobile phone to ensure transaction security and allowing the client to receive a Transaction Authorization Code (TAC) and acknowledgement receipt on the registered mobile number.

Choong is optimistic of Maybank’s continued growth plan up to 2020, continuing to focus on auto loans and the credit card business as well as helping finance more small and medium enterprises.


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