New Service

DBBL, Xpress introduce mobile remittance

Posted by BankInfo on Sat, May 12 2012 09:47 am

Vinesh Venugopal Nair, Vice President, Global Marketing and Communication of Xpress Money Services Ltd and KS Tabrez, Managing Director of DBBL, seen at an inauguration of DBBL mobile banking services in Dhaka.

Dutch-Bangla Bank Limited (DBBL) and Xpress Money Services Limited jointly launched the remittance channeling through DBBL Mobile Banking Services.

Vinesh Venugopal Nair, Vice President, Global Marketing and Communication of Xpress Money Services Ltd and K. S. Tabrez, Managing Director of DBBL, formally inaugurated the service at the bank’s head office in Dhaka Thursday, said a press release.

The service will make the wage earners in abroad able to remit their money to DBBL Mobile Banking Accounts from Xpress Money services.

Upon receipt of money in their mobile accounts, the beneficiaries will be able to withdraw cash from any nearby agent, DBBL branches and ATMs, transfer money to their relatives' mobile account, buy goods and services from a retailer and pay utility bills.

The Daily Sun/ Bangladesh/ 12th May 2012

SIBL launches off-shore banking at Banani

Posted by BankInfo on Thu, May 10 2012 04:03 am

Social Islami Bank Limited (SIBL) has inaugurated its off-shore banking unit at the city’s Banani area.

Chairman of the bank’s board of directors Anisul Hoque opened it as chief guest, said a press release on Wednesday.

The bank will be able to serve non-resident Bangladeshis efficiently and draw foreign investment benefiting the country’s economy through this unit, he said.

News: Daily Sun/ Bangladesh/ 10-May-2012

SIBL opens OBU

Posted by BankInfo on Mon, May 07 2012 10:12 am

Social Islami Bank Limited inaugurated Off-Shore Banking unit of the Bank at a simple ceremony at Banani in the city recently The Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Bank Mr. Md. Anisul Hoque was present in the programme as the chief guest and inaugurated the OBU. The Managing Director of the Bank Mr. Muhammed Ali also seen.

Social Islami Bank Limited inaugurated Off-Shore Banking unit of the Bank at a simple ceremony at Banani in the city recently The Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Bank Mr. Md. Anisul Hoque was present in the programme as the chief guest and inaugurated the OBU.

He said, through this unit SIBL would be able to serve the non-resident Bangladeshi nationals in efficient manner and attract foreign investment as well which shall benefit the economy of the country.

The Managing Director of the Bank Mr. Muhammed Ali, who was also present at the inauguration of the OBU, said that inauguration of OBU shall add value to SIBL's service and the unit shall be focused to cater the needs of foreign investors in Bangladesh and shall also play the role like a foreign banking unit in addressing needs of local banks in International trade related business. He urged that the employees of SIBL must be equipped with adequate knowledge so that they can render the best possible services to its customers.

Deputy Managing Directors Mr. AMM Farhad, Mr. Mohammad Mohashin Miah, Principal of SIBL Training Indtitute Mr. Abu Sadeq Md. Sohel, Manager of Banani Branch Mr.Niamat Uddin Ahmed and valued clients of the branch were present among others.

Financial Express/Bangladesh/ 7th May 2012

BRAC Bank retools retail banking

Posted by BankInfo on Thu, May 03 2012 10:29 am

Syed Mahbubur Rahman, managing director of BRAC Bank, attends the launch of the bank's new retail banking model at Sonargaon Hotel in Dhaka yesterday.

BRAC Bank yesterday launched its new retail banking model to provide more customised and convenient services to fulfil the requirement of its customers.

Under the model, the Bank introduced four segments: Premium, Supreme, Excel and Easy.

The Bank will deploy dedicated service desk at branches to meet requirement of individual customers.

Syed Mahbubur Rahman, managing director and chief executive officer of BRAC Bank, launched the banking model at a press meet at Sonargaon Hotel in Dhaka.

BRAC Bank has always brought in pioneering initiatives in the banking industry with technology and innovation for the benefit of customers,” said Rahman.

He said the launching of the banking model is a step forward towards customer-focused banking and a milestone in the banking industry.

“As a member of sustainable banking group -- Global Alliance for Banking on Values -- we are committed to provide value-based banking that puts prime focus on the needs of the customers,” said Rahman.

He said the Bank will know customers better, understand their needs and design products accordingly and serve them better.

This is the first time in Bangladesh that a Bank introduces customer-centric model where customers will get benefit of demand-driven banking service instead of supply-driven one, the Bank said in a statement.

This is a major shift in traditional banking industry in Bangladesh towards value-based banking with focus on designing products and services as per financial needs of individual customer, according to the statement.

Mohammad Mamdudur Rashid, deputy managing director, and Firoz Ahmed Khan, head of retail banking, were also present.

The Daily Star/Bangladesh/ 3rd May 2012

SBL to pioneer paperless banking in Bangladesh soon Managing Director SA Farooqui tells The Independent in an exclusive interview

Posted by BankInfo on Mon, Apr 30 2012 09:27 am

The Standard Bank Limited (SBL) will soon introduce paperless banking to keep pace with technological advancement, said SA Farooqui, managing director and chief executive officer of the Bank. “It will speed up customer services and reduce cost and other hassles. It’s quicker, easier and safer than the manual system. Transactions and filing of documents take less time under this system," he added.

In an exclusive interview to The Independent, Farooqui said the new system may come into effect from June, during the Bank managers' conference in Chittagong. The chairman and the board of directors will conduct the conference from the Bank’s headquarters through teleconference.

He expressed optimism that all branches of the Bank will come under the paperless banking system by June 2013. All activities of the bank, including transaction, fund transfer and filing of documents will be conducted through computers.

To introduce a paperless office and to speed up international communication, the bank has already introduced in-house e-mail communications under the SBL domain and launched its own website with up-to-date information.

Farooqui said the Bank wants to conduct its board meetings and recruitments through teleconference.
The board will not take any memo from directors. Instead, it will gather support materials, in order to compile and distribute notices electronically. Online publication of agenda packets and minutes is also being thought of.
Similarly, recruitment of probationary officers will be done without any paperwork. The candidates will have to apply through the Internet, register online and attend interviews through teleconference. All documents like admit cards and marksheets will be produced electronically. “Our last recruitment had also been done electronically, and from now on we plan to conduct all recruitments online,” Farooqui added.

Aiming to provide dynamic and innovative services to customers, the Bank always tries to explore new ideas to expedite its services. Introduction of floor officers is such an out-of-the-box idea that the Bank is going to turn into reality.

The floor officers will receive customers, identify their needs and refer them to appropriate desks. They will also respond to enquiries and help quick disposal of services. At times, they will receive and pay out money, and assist customers with loans, foreign currency exchange and investments.

The Bank MD said customer satisfaction has always been the cornerstone of the SBL’s business strategy. All its initiatives are customer-centric, to provide customers with the maximum benefit. To achieve this goal, the Bank always keeps on launching new products and services to cater to the emerging needs of the ever-growing market. The bank is planning to introduce mobile banking by June this year, in order to bring the huge unbanked population under its net.

Farooqui said the Bank's success does not only depend on its products, but also on the services rendered by it. The manager of a branch must know how to deal with customers, irrespective of their social position. “Rural customers will take more time. They feel proud for having a cup of tea with the Bank manager. But in urban areas, you have to deliver faster services,” said the Bank MD.

Customer satisfaction is the key to any bank's well-being. "Therefore, services rendered and products offered must be of high quality. One ought to know the requirement of one's client, understand his mentality and act accordingly to serve him as fast as possible,” he added.

Established as a Public Limited Company in 1999, the SBL offers all major banking services and products to its clients.

During the past 13 years, it has become one of the efficient commercial banks in Bangladesh. It provides all general banking services, like savings account, current account, STD account and various deposit schemes, including Lakhopati Plus, Millionaire Plus. It also has the facilities of corporate banking, SME banking, merchant banking, Islamic banking and remittance services.

The bank has introduced several attractive products and extended loans and credits to different sectors of the economy. Besides, the SBL has already introduced on-line banking at its 68 branches.

The Bank extends financial cooperation to small and medium scale enterprises. “Growth of the SME sector is the key driving force behind employment generation, increased productivity and creation of new wealth,” said Farooqui. He added that as per the Bangladesh Bank’s directive, the SBL has been trying to divert the loan portfolio to increase SME financing. The Bank is also trying to disburse collateral free loan among genuine entrepreneurs.

The Bank also puts due emphasis on agriculture. As many as 14 of its branches are located at strategic points to disburse agro-loan and other crop financing among farmers. Moreover, initiatives are being taken to bring all marginal and landless farmers under the bank's coverage.

For providing services to Bangladeshis working abroad, the Standard Bank maintains five exchange houses in the USA and one in the UK. The Bank is all set to open two exchange houses, one each in the USA and Australia by June to attract more remittance. It has already applied for opening the exchange houses in Los Angeles and Sydney.

Also, two more exchange houses may come up in remittance destinations, like Spain and Florida in the USA, to cash in on inward remittances. Bankers and experts believe a huge amount of remittance is flowing through an informal channel, popularly known as hundi. “The new exchange houses will help route more remittances through the banking channel,” he added.

Dwelling on the country’s overall economic situation, Farooqui said that despite the global crisis and economic slowdown, Bangladesh has performed well.

The country has managed to register 6 per cent growth with improvement in the service sector, moderate expansion in industry and positive contribution from agriculture.

When asked about the prevailing liquidity crisis, Farooqui said: “There is no liquidity crisis, but only a pressure on the economy. A number of development projects, like construction of flyovers and power plants, are taking place. So, there may be some kind of pressure on the economy". He added that it would be eased out soon.

He, however, agreed that the existing bank rate is too high. “But it will come down automatically. If not within this June-July, it will be normal by the end of this year, with increasing flow of funds,” he said. Farooqui pointed out that there remains a large number of unbanked and under-banked people in Bangladesh.

There have been many significant developments in the Bangladesh economy since bank licences were last issued in 2000-01. During the last decade, the GDP has increased from Tk. 2,160 billion to Tk. 3,850 billion at constant market price. Introduction of new banks would help improve the quality of banking services by increasing competition in the sector, Farooqui added.

He noted that new banks will meet the unfulfilled credit demand of the private sector, which is growing in line with the fast-expanding economy. He said this will increase the number of branches in rural areas and improve financial inclusion.

Farooqui started his carrier as a probationary office at the Agrani Bank in 1973, after completing his honours and masters from the University of Dhaka. He joined the National Bank in 1983 and switched over to the SBL in 1999.

Under his stewardship, the SBL has made a remarkable progress in its business over the past few years since he took over as managing director in September, 2008. The Bank’s total deposit stood at Tk. 6,377 crore in 2011 against Tk. 2,931 crore in 2008, reflecting a growth of 118 per cent. The paid-up capital stands at Tk.406 crore, against Tk. 220 crore, marking a growth of 85 per cent. Having started with 27 branches, the bank now has 73 branches, including six exchange houses abroad.

The operating profit of Tk. 301 crore also marks a 105 per cent growth over the last three years from Tk. 147 crore.

To reduce non-classified loans, the Bank continues with its recovery drive throughout the year and also has regular monitoring. At present, non-performing loans stand at 2.17 per cent, against 4.37 per cent in 2008.
"We take special care when someone fails to repay a loan and falls in default culture.

Through counselling, constant monitoring and additional support we always try to drag him out from the pitfall and recover our dues. Sometimes we give him some special care and attention like our 'son-in-law'”, he added.

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is critical to the SBL, as the Bank’s chairman, Ln. Kazi Akramuddin Ahmed, himself a man of charity and philanthropy, loves to help people in distress.

So, the Bank is committed to putting more emphasis on education, environmental protection and support of local communities. The bank’s CSR activities also focus on social development, staff volunteering, consumer education and ethical banking. Every year, the Bank donates about Tk. 5-7 crore for various social, humanitarian, charitable and other social and economic well-being of the society. Recently, the Bank donated some Tk. 1 crore to the Shishu Hospital, Tk. 2 crore to the Bangabhandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Foundation. It also constructed a mosque-cum-cyclone shelter at Kalapara.

Human resources are very important for each and every organisation and the SBL is no exception. The Bank is blessed with a pool of skilled, smart and talented young and energetic staff. “The young generation is smart, brilliant, sincere and more devoted,” he said, adding that they will do better than their predecessors.
When asked about the uniqueness of his bank. The managing director referred to his employees, saying: “Doesn’t our performance prove that they are unique”. He, however, said the Bank has set up a training institute to develop human resources to meet new challenges.

Asked about the rating position, the managing director said the Bank has already created a positive impact on the banking sector. "Our results are impressive compared to the size of the bank. But we are pledge-bound to turn the Bank into a modern dynamic institution. We are committed to remaining fair and transparent."

The Independent/Bangladesh/ 30th April 2012

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