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Best Transaction Banks in China

Asiamoney Best Transaction Banks in China 2019

View the results of the 2019 Asiamoney best transaction banks in China awards here.


 © 2019

Transaction bank of the year: ICBC

Best transaction bank for payments services: China Construction Bank

Best transaction bank for domestic cash management: Agricultural Bank of China

Best transaction bank for international cash management: Bank of China

Best transaction bank for supply chain finance: Bank of Communications 

Best transaction bank for trade finance: Bank of China

Best transaction bank for electronic banking services: China Merchants Bank

Best transaction bank for mobile banking services: China Guangfa Bank

Award winners

Transaction Bank of the Year: ICBC

Known as Gongyinju, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China’s homegrown e-commerce platform is widely used among the bank’s corporate clients. Over the last five years, ICBC has built and adapted Gongyinju for 204 large and medium-sized enterprises, creating a system that gathers more than 90,000 associated upstream and downstream small and micro-enterprises. The platform has helped these enterprises to handle close to 11 million online orders, altogether worth Rmb1.4 trillion ($203 billion), and resulting in Rmb1.54 trillion in total settled transactions. 

The platform also helped companies in the supply chain to obtain Rmb6.59 billion in loans from ICBC, which is led by chairman Chen Siqing.

Gongyinju offers a ‘platform plus data plus finance’ model that was developed with the customer in mind, allowing them to streamline their entire up and downstream supply chain. The client can efficiently handle all payments and settlements and, in the process, accumulate a large number of data streams and information flows that help it to efficiently manage its capital flows.

For example, it offers clients a range of specialized functions including cross-validation of payments, precision marketing and risk-prevention services. The online services are extended to all of the client’s suppliers and vendors, offering them the full capacity to quickly obtain online financing and loans.

According to the bank, the platform is designed to enable clients to improve stickiness with suppliers and vendors, helping them to integrate their logistics chain into one online system.

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Best Transaction Bank for Payment Services: China Construction Bank

CCB’s enterprise-level aggregate payment platform was launched in September 2017. 

The platform gives merchants a wide range of invoice collection tools that easily connect to China’s main social media apps, such as WeChat, Alipay and UnionPay, as well as multiple other payment methods.

CCB, led by chairman Tian Guoli, has more than three million corporate clients, as of the end of the year, achieving a transaction volume of more than Rmb300 billion ($43 billion) and covering payments in a wide range of industries. 

When Alibaba’s Tmall held its National Day celebrations, CCB’s payment transactions peaked at 21,751 per second; total network payment transactions amounted to Rmb64 billion, accounting for nearly 30% of Tmall’s total transaction volume on that day.

CCB provides clients with an internet platform that caters to all enterprises, whether they sell direct to retail customers or to other businesses.

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Best Transaction Bank for Domestic Cash Management: Agricultural Bank of China

Agricultural Bank of China is best known for serving businesses in the nations’ agricultural and rural economies. But the bank has expanded in recent years to provide cash management services to 2.45 million clients across all industries and urban centres, including the majority of China’s top 500 corporations.

ABC’s transaction banking business focuses on procurement, sales and other transactions that occur in the daily production and operation activities of its enterprise customers, helping them to effectively manage funds, provide payment settlement, cash management, investment and wealth management, supply chain financing and risk management.

Led by its chairman Zhou Mubing, ABC’s system offers more than 80 products and functions that span basic settlement, cash management and supply chain financing processes.

ABC has adopted technologies and applications including big data and blockchain.

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Best Transaction Bank for International Cash Management: Bank of China

Since 2009, Bank of China has invested nearly Rmb600 million ($87 million) in building a domestic and foreign currency, global cash-management platform that connects the banks’ enterprise clients to the world of finance, giving them not only cash management abilities but also access to the global Swift remittance network, and multi-bank cash management systems.

The Domestic Cash Management Platform+ system offers clients easy access to cash and finance functions at home and abroad. 

So far, BoC has installed a Swift direct connection system in 18 countries and regions.

Since 2018, the bank has been promoting six cash management services. For example, Global Vision Pass helps clients be fully compliant with the latest Chinese regulations and guidelines on offshore remittances and cash management. So far, 15 Chinese conglomerates have signed up for the service.

Both Ways Vision Pass helps customers to open and gain access to a wide range of domestic and foreign capital channels. At present, the global cash management platform has launched 487 cross-border two-way renminbi funds pools and 254 centralized cross-border foreign currency working capital pools.

Smart Bookkeeping Pass provides physical account classification and accounting functions for those enterprise clients in the services and administrative industries; so far, 4,644 enterprises have signed up.

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Best Transaction Bank for Supply-Chain Finance: Bank of Communications

Bank of Communications has developed a complete one-stop supply chain management and financing platform that focuses on payment settlement, trade financing and value-added services.

The bank works with clients such as online events ticket retailers, and offers ticket purchase financing, bill discounting, accounts receivable financing and fast factoring.

In addition, the bank has helped automobile clients to build a pilot smart dealer platform. 

BoCom helps clients track and manage a wide range of information, including capital and logistics flow, and the whole process of electronic sales financing is done online via the bank’s supply chain management platform. 

In recent years, the platform’s bill and invoice processing capabilities have gained a wide following among large enterprise clients.

The bank handled online discounting services for more than 4,000 enterprises, with total financing amounting to Rmb80 billion ($11.6 billion) at the end of 2018.

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Best Transaction Bank for Trade Finance: Bank of China

Bank of China remains the most global of Chinese banks when it comes to trade finance. It offers clients a large global network for renminbi exchange and clearing through more than 110 offshore branches. The bank has invested in building out a substantial global IT network that offers clients the ability to manage cash and seek trade financing globally. 

Chief among the offshore units, the transaction banking unit in Hong Kong, which operates as part of Bank of China International, serves as a nerve centre for its global trade finance operations. Unlike other banks, which tend to insist that clients use only their in-house payment systems, Bank of China cooperates with even non-banking payment partners such as Chinese e-commerce firm Alibaba Group’s e-payment platform, Alipay.

The bank is working with leading Chinese internet technology companies to develop technology and software for online payment services that make cross-border cash management easy for anyone with a smartphone.

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Best Transaction Bank for Electronic Banking Services: China Merchants Bank

China Merchants Bank is so serious about improving its customer experience that its transaction banking division recently set up a specialist unit, employing 10 people to research client interactions, both online and offline. The team is using the research results to improve the bank’s service interfaces, both online and offline, as well as to help its biggest clients to tailor-make and build entire e-banking services. 

Dozens of Chinese conglomerates have signed up. For example, CMB helped Sinopec set up its Easy Trade B2B platform, which allows for cloud billing.

Cloud billing enables Sinopec to make digital gateway payments, guarantee payments and process order payments. Cloud billing, in effect, gives Sinopec direct payment access to all of its clients globally without actually going through banking channels.

Hou Weirong, China Merchants Bank 

CMB is investing in a broad-based fintech strategy that includes building a large system of industrial chain financing for all its enterprise customers. For instance, the bank helped telecom infrastructure builder China Tower Corp set up a supply chain financial cloud platform that accommodates multi-core enterprises, multiple funds and multiple product architectures. 

Led by Hou Weirong, general manager of the transaction banking department, CMB executives believe that blockchain, big data risk control and other financial technology applications can help its clients to solve billing issues, including improving digital mutual trust, the mitigation of financial risk, and ultimately one-click financing, with funds delivered quickly to accounts.

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Best Transaction Bank for Mobile Banking Services: China Guangfa Bank

Mobile banking is the new battleground for digitalization of corporate banking business. Since the launch of the China Guangfa mobile banking app a few years ago, the bank has received positive feedback from customers.

Chen Xingfei, China Guangfa Bank 

Guangfa’s app has attracted more than 29,400 customers and 80,000 users, according to the most recent figures. From March 2018 to February 2019, financial transactions via the app topped Rmb387 billion ($56 billion). 

Guangfa’s app was designed to enable executives to manage corporate treasury via their smartphones. The app’s design gives top executives the power of one-stop transfers — with just one menu, an executive has the whole range of treasury functions at his or her fingertips, including the ability to approve and transfer large volumes of funds via a wide range of payment methods.

The app’s design has a simplified menu and gives the user scope to customize functions to suit the internal management needs of an enterprise. 

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