Aims at expanding profit bases and smartphone banking for bigger share of new financial markets
President Min Byung-deok of Kookmin Bank gives his New Year speech at a
ceremony to kick off the New Year at the bank's head office in Yeouido, Seoul, Jan. 4.
Kookmin Bank plans to step up its overseas operations this year, centering on advanced countries and emerging markets at the same time. Its strategy is to expand in Asia and advanced nations with strengthened operations.
What the bank has planned is an immediate kick off to its operations in Myanmar and Indonesia, with their huge natural resources reserves and large populations, as global financial institutions are now focusing on Asia and emerging markets because European and U.S. financial markets are not what they used to be due to huge debts igniting economic crises.
The bank had to redraw its key strategy for this year to cope with changes in a number of key areas in the global financial environment including social, cultural, customer, and technology.
The strategy is to cope with new banking trends such as smartphone banking and a rising elderly population, so that the bank will be able to sustain its management in the changing business environment.
The strategy will call for the bank to strengthen its customer service, the “Golden Life Service,” especially to the baby boomers born between 1955 and 1963 who are on the verge of retiring °™the “silver customers.” The bank will also expand its smartphone banking service with the number of customers using the service for banking transactions rising to around 5 million already across the country and other new financial trends developing rapidly in order to secure new growth engines.
The bank will also step up its moves to secure new profit bases, since interest earnings have been declining every year as the number of new loans continues to fall.
The bank projects low GDP growth and low interest rates on loans to continue this year, showing that it should secure new profit bases as early as possible. The bank has decided to return to basics and principles and enhance its management, which will clamp down on starting new businesses to seek risky profits.
The bank sees net interest margin as a major earnings source, but sound management is also a key factor in maintaining its earnings level, so the bank will focus on both factors in its operations this year.
For firmer risk management, the bank will reassess the credit situations of borrowers who take out mortgages to finance their house purchases to strengthen the management of those borrowers and also strengthen conditions for the extension of loans to reduce loans risks. In order to make repayment of housing loans easier for borrowers, the bank will transform them into long-term installment loans and repay them in installments with flexibility in their monthly repayment amount.
The bank will also expand its loans to SMEs and poor families this year. The loans to SMEs will be expanded under the “KB Hidden Star” program launched in 2011, which has so far provided loans to over 215 small businesses. That number will be doubled this year as the bank will continue to seek out SMEs with very good growth prospects. The program seeks out SMEs with sound financials, excellent technologies, and good outlooks to help them grow to be world-class enterprises.