BPI sees 15 pct hike in loan portfolio

by Ted P. Torres, The Philippine Star

Posted at May 25 2013 12:04 PM | Updated as of May 25 2013 08:04 PM

MANILA, Philippines - The Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) expects its loan portfolio to grow about 15 percent this year, in line with the growth rate forecast for the country’s banking system.

On the sidelines of the formal launching of BPI’s first solar-powered branch yesterday, BPI president and chief executive officer Cezar P. Consing said he anticipates the loan portfolio growth to be balanced, with the wholesale and agri sectors contributing more.

“What you see today is that a lot more multinationals are looking towards the Philippines,” Consing said. “Eventually that will translate into wholesale loan demand.”

Wholesale lending is seen to emanate mainly from locators in the economic zones.

In 2012, BPI’s net loan portfolio grew 16 percent to P527 billion, with both the wholesale and consumer market segments registering double-digit growth rates.

The consumer market segment grew 17 percent while top-tier corporates grew 12 percent.

Likewise, the banking arm of the Ayala Group will be increasing lending to the agri and agribusiness sector. Combined loan packages for this sector could reach as high as P12 billion.

Meanwhile, total resources reached P985 billion or 17 percent higher than the previous year as the bank’s core businesses remained solid. Deposits expanded 18 percent to P802 billion while assets under management stood at P743 billion or 11 percent higher, bringing total intermediated funds to P1.5 trillion.

In another development, Consing said, the solar energy system installed at the BPI Ayala Ave. Extension branch would result in a reduction of the branch’s energy bills by 20-25 percent.

He pointed out that while the potential savings is relatively small, it could result to a substantial amount when applied to a large number of its branches.

“Imagine if BPI can apply the same solar energy system in a quarter or roughly 200 branches, the savings would amount to millions of pesos,” he noted.