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OCBC to invest more than $50 mil into banking Greater China, targets $3 bil incremental revenue by 2025

Jovi Ho
Jovi Ho • 4 min read
OCBC to invest more than $50 mil into banking Greater China, targets $3 bil incremental revenue by 2025
From left: Tan Wing Ming, acting head of Greater China, OCBC; Helen Wong, group chief executive officer, OCBC; Andrew Khoo, board chairman, OCBC Hong Kong; and Ivy Au-Yeung, chief executive officer, OCBC Hong Kong. Photo: OCBC
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Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation (OCBC) will invest more than $50 million over the next three years to build up transaction banking capabilities in Greater China. As part of a slew of new targets announced on July 3 in its “sharpened Asean-Greater China focus”, OCBC O39 -

aims to reap $3 billion in total incremental revenue over the next three years until 2025.

To this end, OCBC aims to double its investment banking revenue in three years, and achieve more than 500 regional mandates for cash management over the next five years.

OCBC also aims to intensify its coverage of Hong Kong’s small businesses, targeting to onboard 26,000 new small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) there over the next three years, which will add to its global wholesale banking customer base of 320,000 customers.

By 2025, OCBC aims to double assets under management (AUM) of its Premier Banking and Premier Private Client segments for Greater China. OCBC expects to grow its pool of bankers in line with this regional push; the bank says it will double its number of relationship managers serving high-net worth customers in Greater China by 2025.

According to OCBC, this is in line with its projections from 2021, when the bank said it would increase the number of corporate and commercial bankers by 30% to about 400 by 2024.

Bank of Singapore, OCBC’s private banking subsidiary, also aims to increase its AUM to US$145 billion ($196.08 billion) by end-2025, having tripled its AUM in the decade between 2013 and 2022 to US$124 billion today. To reach this new AUM target, Bank of Singapore says it will grow its team of relationship managers from some 400 currently to 500 by then.

See also: OCBC reports record net profit of $1.88 bil for 1QFY2023, 39% higher y-o-y

The strategic refresh is accompanied by a unified brand across its core markets; from 4Q2023, OCBC Wing Hang Bank (China) Limited will go by OCBC Bank Limited in mainland China, subject to regulatory approval.

In addition, OCBC Wing Hang Bank Limited is now OCBC Bank (Hong Kong) Limited and Banco OCBC Weng Hang, S.A. is now OCBC Bank (Macau) Limited.

See also: RHB downgrades OCBC to 'neutral' with lower NIM, net profit forecast

With these legal name changes in Greater China, OCBC has launched a unified refreshed logo for its banking entities, retiring the word “Bank” from its brand image after 34 years. OCBC NISP, OCBC’s Indonesian subsidiary, will adopt the same logo in 4Q2023. The logo for Bank of Singapore, however, remains unchanged.

In tandem with the new refreshed logo, the bank has launched a new tagline — “For now, and beyond”.

Speaking in Hong Kong at the unveiling of OCBC’s new strategy, group chief executive officer Helen Wong says the bank recognises the potential of business flows between Asean and Greater China. “Over the years, we have built a strong franchise and put ourselves in a very good position to capture these flows. The effects of China’s reopening post-pandemic, the rise of Asean for the China plus one strategy and other geopolitical factors have amplified this potential.”

OCBC first entered mainland China in 1925 through its Xiamen branch. Since then, OCBC has been operating without interruption in the country.

OCBC acquired Wing Hang in 2014 for $6.2 billion, marking the largest acquisition in the bank's history and besting the $2.9 billion it paid for Keppel Capital in 2001.

See also: Analysts await details on OCBC's $3 bil incremental revenue goal, expected at 1HFY2023 earnings call on Aug 4

Today, OCBC owns $93 billion in total assets across Greater China, in addition to a 20% stake in Bank of Ningbo. Between 2013 and 2022, OCBC’s Greater China income contribution more than tripled to 20% of total income, while Asean ceded some ground to 75% from 90%. OCBC’s Greater China and Asean operations booked $2.5 billion and $9.5 billion in total income respectively last year.

The bank’s Greater China operations count some 4,500 staff across 67 branches in 17 cities in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan. Wong says: “We are therefore confident that we will be able to deliver $3 billion in incremental revenue by 2025 from our Asean-Greater China focus.”

Photos: OCBC

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