MANILA – Philippine Business Bank (PBB), the financial arm of the Yao Group of Companies, is set to open five more branches before the end of the year to bring its total network to 115.
However, PBB will be ending the year with fewer additional branches due to issues with site locations and construction delays.
PBB ended 2013 with 100 branches, and initially planned to open 20 to 25 new branches this year.
“The branch expansion has proven its merit given the strong growth of the loan and deposit business of the bank. The branch network expansion program has been met with delays due to difficulties in selecting attractive sites, coupled with the inclement weather which caused some construction delays in sites already chosen,” PBB president and chief executive Roland Avante said in a disclosure to the stock exchange.
A projected eight restricted branches are scheduled to be opened next year. PBB said it expects to reach 200 to 250 branches over the medium term.
“We will continue with the branch expansion as this is central to the bank’s vision of partnering with the small and medium-sized enterprises located throughout the archipelago. We see dynamism in leading business centers outside the capital, and there are also up-and-coming provinces which have a lot of potential,” Avante said.
Meanwhile, Dave Sison, PPB’s head of corporate planning and investor relations officer, said that while the bank will be ending the year with fewer additional branches, it “will not sacrifice the bank’s long-term business just for the sake of meeting short-term numbers.”
PBB said that currently, loan generation from the branches is nearly P14 billion from under P5 billion in 2012.
For the first nine months of the year, PBB’s pre-tax pre-provision profit was lower by 43.3 percent at P674.2 million and net income was lower by 52 percent due to a decline on earnings caused by branch expansion and the uncertain trading environment.