Hong Kong's best bank for SMEs 2017: Hang Seng Bank
Hang Seng Bank
Starting in the 1930s, Hang Seng built its franchise banking the small Hong Kong traders and hawkers that other banks wouldn’t touch. The more things change, the more they get bigger.
With its deep community roots, Hang Seng has a long track record as a trusted financial partner for Hong Kong’s small and medium-sized enterprises. Commercial banking deepened customer relationships and leveraged its strong cross-border connectivity to achieve balanced growth in customer deposits and advances. In an uncertain operating environment for many businesses, Hang Seng’s industry sector expertise supported the needs of commercial clients and added value by providing flexible financial management solutions. To drive non-fund income, the bank stepped up efforts to strengthen its transaction banking product capabilities and enhance corporate wealth management penetration.
The growth of Hang Seng’s SME business has remained a strategic focus. Upgrades to its digital and physical service channels reinforced the competitiveness of the bank’s extensive distribution network, and enhancements to its integrated financial services proposition have further strengthened customer engagement, resulting in solid revenue growth.
In 2016, it achieved an 8% increase in income from its SME portfolio. A concerted effort to target mainland customers in Hong Kong saw SME deposits rise by 9%. Mainlanders accounted for 61% of new business in 2016, helping Hang Seng to a 30% increase in fees from insurance products and a 13% rise in fees from remittances and account-related services.
These initiatives enabled Hang Seng to maintain good business momentum and achieve a 2% increase in operating profit in its commercial bank, excluding loan impairment charges, to HK$5.9 billion ($757 million), with SME growth the main driver. Operating profit rose by 1% to HK$5.3 billion.