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UOB Malaysia targets 8pct loans growth for business banking this year

Updated: Jul 18, 2018

UALA LUMPUR: United Overseas Bank (Malaysia) Bhd has targeted an eight per cent loan growth for its business banking this year, to be driven by the bank’s commitment in deepening its support to the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) through technology and digitalisation, specialised advisory and innovative funding solution.

UOB Malaysia executive director and business banking country head Raymond Chui said the bank sees a lot of opportunity to grow as more SMEs move forward to digitalise their businesses in order to manage their businesses more efficiently.

“The business banking contribution to UOB Malaysia is about 13 per cent in terms of profitability and nine per cent in terms of asset size. Year-on-year, we see 15 per cent growth in customer acquisition rate and three per cent growth in asset size.

“Over the past three years, the business banking segment of UOB Malaysia has been growing at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 10 per cent.

“We see plenty of opportunities to tap into the SME market and support them,” he told NST Business in an interview recently.

He said as hard selling method does not work anymore now, the bank now has to look towards introducing a more customised products to suit its customers’ banking need.

“For example, earlier last year, we launched our UOB Business app aimed at providing SMEs with a single access to all business needs. The app is equipped with foreign exchange alert, news and insights, as well as products and promotions.

“Certainly, there will be more interesting product to be launched – all targeted to support our SMEs customers digitally,” he said.

UOB Malaysia and business software provider SAP had in June announced a tie-up to offer UOB SmartBusiness to the bank’s SME customers.

UOB SmartBusiness is a cloud-based integrated digital business solution designed to help SMEs make cost savings and improve their operating efficiency.

It enables SMEs to streamline and to digitise their back office processes such as accounting, payroll, and business management through a secure and integrated digital solution.

SMEs can also link their UOB SmartBusiness account to their UOB current account, thereby enabling an automated bank reconciliation process through the matching of transactions to sales invoices or bill payments.

SMEs can choose from three options, depending on the functionalities they require and the number of employees in the organisation. The most basic package will be complimentary for UOB Malaysia’s Business Banking customers.

Chui said as SMEs progress through different growth stages, managing a larger and more complex business poses new challenges.

“To help our SME customers improve their operational efficiency as they grow, UOB Malaysia is working with SAP to provide SMEs a scalable and affordable digital solution that will save them time and money,” he said.

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