Strategy 2024 – Bank Pekao starts a new, client-centric chapter. Sets new ambitious goals in digitalization and efficiency
ROE: ~10%, C/I: 42%, the number of active mobile banking customers: 3.2m – these are main goals of the new Pekao’s strategy for the years 2021-2024. Today the bank approved its new strategy “Responsible bank. Modern banking”. It will focus on digital transformation, process efficiency and growth in the most profitable segments. The bank intends to concentrate on young clients and to develop its presence on the e-commerce market. The strategy is based on four pillars: Customer, Growth, Efficiency and Responsibility. It is the result of cooperation of a wide group of the bank’s employees. In reference to the new strategy, Pekao also established a dividend policy for the years 2021-2024 – assuming the dividend payout ratio at 50-75% of the bank’s net profit in each of the above years.
“Customer”, “Growth”, “Efficiency” and “Responsibility” – the implementation of the assumptions which lie beneath these slogans will determine the bank's activity for the forthcoming four years. Customer-friendly approach will be one of the strategy pillars and will be implemented i.a. through the dynamic development of mobile banking and the use of advanced data analytics. Pekao will make every endeavour to enable retail customers to fulfil practically all their needs online – digitalization rate of almost 100% is one of the key strategic aspirations. Rapid digital transformation is to improve cost and process efficiency. The bank's 2024 strategic goals include: increasing the return on equity (ROE) to a level of ~10%, improving the C/I ratio to 42% and reaching the number of 3.2m active mobile banking customers.
– Digitalization is one of our priorities, as there are more and more clients choosing remote channels, and the pandemics has only accelerated this process. We must anticipate their expectations and offer them up-to-date solutions. The transformation will result in a further efficiency improvement. Our goal is to restore profitability measured by ROE to the level above the cost of capital. The presentation of the new strategy opens the next stage of growth for us. We have all the tools as well as an excellent team to fulfil our ambitions. – says Leszek Skiba, CEO of Bank Pekao S.A.
Key pillars of the bank’s development
The new strategy of Bank Pekao is based on four pillars, whose implementation will be supported by the evolution of organizational culture.
“Customer” is the focus of the first pillar of the strategy. PeoPay mobile app will be the main contact point for customers.
The bank puts particular emphasis on the quality of customer service in all segments. Pekao’s aspiration is considerable increase in client satisfaction. It is to be achieved by providing wider availability of services in digital channels as well as fast and convenient processes.
The second pillar of the strategy is defined by “Growth”.
– We aim to strengthen our market position in cash loans and among micro-enterprises, and increase the sales of loans for SMEs. As we wish to be the bank of first choice for young customers, we must become a leader in digital services. Our goal is to acquire over 600,000 customers under 26 years of age by 2024 – says Leszek Skiba.
In the next four years Pekao expects to acquire over 400,000 retail customers each year and increase its market share in cash loans from 7% up to 10%. Personalization of services is going to be a key to the success.
The bank plans to achieve growth in small and medium-sized enterprises segment thanks to the greater use of the potential of remote channels, data analytics, simpler and more customer-friendly credit processes. Due to these measures the bank should increase the market share in this segment to 12%. In micro-enterprises sector the bank’s plan is to acquire over 40,000 customers per year and to increase the market share by 3 pp up to 8%. Additionally, Pekao plans to develop leasing and factoring as well as expand the range of online financial management services.
Pekao will also concentrate on growth in investment products through digitization of the offer, service processes and strong investment advisory competences. Over 80% sales volume of mutual funds is to be realized in remote channels.
The bank sees its cooperation with PZU as a trigger for insurance sales increase. Its goal is to double the gross written premium income by 2024.
E-commerce presence and its development is another target to be met by Pekao. That is why the bank will make deferred payments available and will launch an offer of cash loans for customers shopping online. The bank will also offer solutions for e-stores and e-commerce platforms allowing installment sale.
“Efficiency” is the third pillar of the strategy. Pekao intends to accelerate its technological transformation and take advantage of customers migration to remote channels. It will be accomplished through extending the range of solutions available in digital channels as well as rapid increase of the level of operation automation.
The bank plans to speed up credit procedures, aiming to shorten the decision time to 8 days in the case of mortgages and to 1 day in the case of loans for micro-enterprises and SMEs.
– The driving force for the new strategy is our technology center – flexible and quickly adapting to dynamically changing market conditions. We want to focus on mobile technologies, artificial intelligence, big data, hyperautomation and cloud solutions – says Błażej Szczecki, deputy CEO supervising Pekao’s Operations and IT Division.
The fourth pillar addresses "Responsibility". The bank wants to support economic development by focusing on governmental and EU programs for economic recovery and climate transformation. At the same time, the bank's commercial and operational activity will be more concentrated on sustainable development factors.
Taking the changing market environment into consideration, Pekao expects to maintain a safe risk profile and wishes to have one of the lowest risk costs among the largest banks. To this end, it will improve the infrastructure of risk models, automate credit assessment processes and ensure cybersecurity.
– Financing sustainable projects, supporting an orderly transition to a low-carbon economy and increased financing of renewable energy are our priorities. We intend to focus more on environmental, social and corporate governance factors – explains Krzysztof Kozłowski, deputy CEO responsible for Pekao’s Strategy Division. – It cannot happen without active support for development of Polish enterprises. We are going to offer them participation in a variety of programs and accelerators. We are aware that in order to achieve our goals we need to be viewed as an attractive employer, focusing on employee development. We must also continue and strongly emphasize charity and educational activities. The highest standards of corporate governance and an institutional approach to ESG are an important framework for our development – Kozłowski adds.
Pekao's ambition until 2024 is to be among the most profitable and efficient banks in Poland. Therefore, in the new strategy the bank focuses on a significant increase in the return on equity (ROE) to the level of ~10%, and reduction of the cost-to-income ratio (C/I) to the level of approximately 42%. At the same time, the bank plans to successively share with investors the financial results of its strategy via dividends. Pekao's new dividend policy for the period of 2021-2024 assumes a yearly dividend payout ratio of 50%-75%, dependent on regulatory approvals.
– Our strong capital position allows us to achieve the predicted growth. We also plan to maintain a safe level of capital, with the Tier 1 ratio above 14%. A generous dividend policy, based on an above-average in the sector payout ratio, allows us to achieve ambitions of profitable growth and to guarantee dividends, which are important to many of our investors. We want to be an attractive company for a wide range of investors – says Tomasz Kubiak, Pekao’s CFO.
The future of the bank in the light of new definitions
The new strategy was designed by a considerable group of the bank’s employees. The document was developed internally.
– We decided that our plans and objectives should be identified by the bank's employees, with whom we will implement the strategy. So it happened. Colleagues from all bank divisions participated in numerous workshops and discussions. The presented document is the outcome of these meetings. It was strenuous and most inspiring work, which I am sure will take us to a new level of banking. I would like to thank our colleagues for this effort and commitment. Now we are all starting the implementation of the new strategy – says Krzysztof Kozłowski, deputy CEO supervising strategy creation.
The bank also redefined its mission, which is "Simple and safe banking world". It indicates that Pekao wishes to set standards in the market, at the same time being a responsible partner in the everyday life of millions of Poles. The institution defines its activity threefold – a positive influence on economy, building strong relationships with entrepreneurs and ensuring the security of clients.
Pekao's vision is expressed in the slogan "Let's be the best together". It is an aspiration to be a leader on the Polish banking market, i.e. the fastest growing and modern bank with an offer that goes beyond traditional services. Pekao wants to boost the strength of domestic brands as well as to be an inspiring workplace.
Bank Pekao S.A., founded in 1929, is one of the largest financial institutions in the CEE region and top 3 universal bank in Poland with ca. PLN 230bn assets and market capitalization of ca. PLN 30bn.Through the second largest branch network, Bank Pekao serves over 5.7m retail customers. As the leading corporate bank in Poland, Bank Pekao serves every second among largest corporates in Poland. Status of a universal bank is underpinned by a market-leading private banking, asset management and brokerage operations. Diversified business profile is supported by a market-leading balance sheet and risk profile reflected in lowest cost of risk, strong capital ratios and resilience to macro conditions (top 3 banks in 2018 EU-wide EBA exercise).
Since 1998 Bank Pekao has been listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange and has been a member of several local (incl. WIG 20 and WIG Banks) and international indices (incl. MSCI EM, Stoxx Europe 600, FTSE Developed). Pekao is among top dividend companies listed in Warsaw, with total payout of PLN 20bn during last 10 years.