UnionBank Bags Top Award As ‘Asia Trailblazer Institution Of The Year’ At The 2021 Retail Banker International Asia Trailblazer Awards
Union Bank of the Philippines (UnionBank) was bestowed the top award “ASIA TRAILBLAZER INSTITUTION OF THE YEAR” among 300 entries from 25 countries at the recently concluded 2021 Retail Banker International (RBI) Asia Trailblazer Awards in Singapore.
The 2021 Asia Trailblazers Awards celebrate and recognize the best-in-class retail banking and consumer finance companies across the Asian continent. The awards were judged across 12 category groups and recognised those organisations and individuals who showcased innovation, speed and efficacy of delivery and most importantly an exemplary commitment to customer needs and over-all contribution to the individual and larger community.
Among the key takeaways from the awards submissions in 2021 has been the resilience of the regional banking industry and their ability to develop innovative solutions, and deliver new offerings in record times to help combat the financial implications on their customers in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“UnionBank has conducted their business through the Covid-19 pandemic with sensitivity, integrity and diligence. Clear thinking, agility and innovation underpin the banks stellar commercial results. The leadership has developed employees, leveraged third party relationships, leapt on digital opportunities and focused on customer need to ensure that internally they are a world-class bank. This has resulted in fantastic, customer-centric solutions which are relevant in today's unpredictable market. In addition, they have also contributed to society focusing on underbanked segments and giving back to the community at every possible opportunity,” as stated in the Judges’ citation.
UnionBank was also awarded the following recognition for its various pioneering innovations, namely:
Winner – Best Remittances Initiative in Asia for its Send Cash to Remittance Centers project. Due to the pandemic, mobility to go out and send funds was restricted and is still currently limited as well. In just less than three weeks, the Bank had empowered its customers to send funds to their families and loved ones, from the safety of their homes, through 11,000 remittance centers.
Winner- Dynamic Third-Party Collaboration in Asia for its Financial Supply Chain project. In 2019, UnionBank engaged with IBM for the Hyperledger Fabric to develop the First Financial Supply Blockchain in the Philippines and develop the Financial Supply Chain Ecosystem (FSCE) platform. Having a very dynamic business model, plenty of use cases and rapidly changing customer demands, it was essential for UnionBank’s Financial Supply Chain Squad to create a dynamic development environment with both third-party developers and clients. By creating key partnerships with third-party vendors, the Bank is able to continue the development on FSCE at a fraction of its original cost while allowing its partners to benefit from the new skillset they gain from the project. By co-creating with clients, the Bank is able to develop features and functionalities that can be deployed at scale to different ecosystems while ensuring their particular needs are met. By having an agile and customer-centric development squad UnionBank FSCE is able to constantly produce and launch new products and features to support the rapidly changing demands of the market.
Winner- Excellence in Graduate Employment Programme in Asia for its Lead Management Program. In 2009, the Bank launched the Leader Executive Accelerated Development (LEAD) program, its one-of-a-kind talend pooling and leadership training initiative that will support the Bank’s Leadership Pipeline requirements by establishing a pool of digitally capable individuals who can help the Bank’s transformation, lead people, and lead leaders. To date, candidates of the program have produced top-notch traditional and digital banking products and platforms that changed the lives of our clients and partners. These products also brought UnionBank international recognition such as Asia Pacific Digital Trailblazer, 4-time Digital Bank of the Year, Asia Trailblazer Institution of the Year, to name a few.
Highly Commended Achievement- Excellence in Employee Engagement in Asia because of its holistic implementation of employee engagement practices that have resulted in an engaged, high-performing workforce. Because it has kept its employees engaged, the Bank delivered strong financial results with an above-target income that increased by 11% amidst the pandemic. Despite blended work set-ups, we were able to open 2.4 million new accounts, awarded 2nd Most Helpful Bank in Asia-Pacific in 2020, and recognized Most Recommended Retail Bank in the Asia Pacific and the Philippines in 2021 by BankQuality.com. Its customers have also rated it with a satisfaction survey rating of 4.904 (out of 5.0) and Nielsen’s Net Promoter Score is at 84%
Highly Commended Achievement - Best Retail Bank Philippines for recording above-industry results while the rest of the industry posted decline in profitability. The Bank posted the highest return on equity (ROE) at 11.5% versus the industry’s 6.6%. The Bank’s digital take-up increased by 307%, retail users of the app increased by 309%, while digital corporate customers grew by 199%.
The Retail Banker International (RBI) Asia Trailblazer Awards is a platform for strategic executives to evaluate avenues for growth and innovation, offering participants an opportunity to explore, compare and decide on their future technology investments. The programme delivers an exceptional learning experience bringing together the most senior retail banking executives, vendors, and other key industry stakeholders from across Asia.