Pichincha is a universal bank that serves all types of customers. Our microfinance program was established 15 years ago, when we found a very important niche in the market. Pichincha is not only the largest bank in Ecuador, but also the largest lender of micro credits in the country.
The bank is with both the borrower and the lender throughout the process. Although it is an expensive banking strategy, it’s very profitable in the economic and social sense, and these experiences have been fantastic for us.
ELECTRONIC & WIRELESS
We process 300 million transactions per year, one-third of which are done through ATMs. An additional one-third are completed through the internet. This means that, in total, two-thirds of our transactions are done electronically.
ENRIQUE LUÍS BELTRÁN
Over the last 39 years, Banco Internacional has been committed to giving its clients products and services that offer real solutions to their problems. Throughout the years we’ve been mainly dedicated to credit intermediation in Ecuador’s productive sectors.
EFFICIENT IN PRODUCTION
We have huge expectations regarding the export of non-oil products such as bananas, tuna, shrimp, flowers, coffee, cocoa, and hearts of palm. We are participating significantly in these sectors. Just as we have been very efficient in the productive sector, we are also successful in foreign trade.
We offer our clients a solid portfolio of products and services based on personalized assistance. We are dedicated to understanding the business, analyzing where investments come from, and managing the capacity for credit recovery operations.
Banco de Guayaquil has been operating in the Ecuadorean market for more than 85 years now, and today it is the bank with the highest credit rating—AAA neutral.
We have the largest branch network in the country: 191 branches and 780 ATMs. In addition, we have over 3,400 service points for our Banco del Barrio program, which is geared toward local SMEs. This allows us to be present in 216 of the country’s 221 main urban areas, reaching 99% of the population.
New amendments in the Ecuadorean mortgage law will bring important changes to the sector, because, from my point of view, they are aimed at markets where mortgages for second houses drive the market, and they target future problems that Ecuador will have.
The year 2011 was very positive for the banking sector in Ecuador; the banks reached significant levels of liquidity, and we saw significant growth in loan portfolios. The financial system remains very liquid, with a clear solidity and solvency above locally and internationally required levels.
The regulations contribute to the management of risk and liquidity, and we have experienced an increase in the penetration of banking products due to economic development, and in the demand for consumer and car loans, credit cards, and mortgages.
Our main priority is to continue our expansion and development because we aim to increase our market share to up to 5% in the future. Today, we have a 3% market share. In order to achieve our goals, we need to maintain a growth rate above overall sector growth; something we have done over the last decade.
Banco del Pacífico has been in the market for 40 years and we have been very proactive about promoting our brand and our reputation for good service and state-of-the-art technology. We are proud of the fact that our reputation remained intact through the recent crisis.
In 2004, we started promoting mortgages and lowered our interest rates from 16% to 10%. Since then, we have continued lowering our rates and we now offer the lowest interest rates of any private mortgage provider in Ecuador—normally between 8% and 9%.
There is very high demand across all industries right now as a result of the import restrictions the government has put in place. We see this as an opportunity for the local industry to diversify into sectors that were formerly dominated by imports, and we are exploring ways of offering financing in those sectors.
We were pioneers in offering small credit to large segments of the population through credit cards. This, combined with solid relations, translates into lower credit card costs for our clients and benefits and promotions for them on the retail side.
What moves the economy right now is public investment and this also helps our market grow. What we have to look out for are market distortions. Public banks, such as the BIESS, are offering mortgage loans at below-market interest rates.
ECONOMIES OF SCALE
In the area of micro consumption, in order to be profitable, you have to be very efficient and extremely automated. Due to the fact that the average credit is very low and operational costs are standard, economies of scale are required.
HAPPY TO ADAPT
We have good rates and excellent service, and we are happy to adapt to people’s needs. We pride ourselves on being a bank that operates on the same level as the client, unlike the big league banks that are seldom personal.
The segment is very competitive, and there are many banks vying for a piece of the pie. We aspire to take 5%-10% of the market. However, we are not present in every city, which makes it difficult to conduct a market share analysis.
We are planning to introduce factoring, building upon the experience of our Colombian partners who have a very successful factoring company in Colombia. With this know-how, we also want to explore the factoring market.
© The Business Year