“We try to always think outside the box”

“We try to always think outside the box”

The world is changing every day, and sales and communication channels with customers are evolving in favor of digitalization. Our goal is to follow this wave and build a partnership with our current and future clients – he said in an interview with BIZLife magazine Vojislav Lazarević, President of the Executive Board of Addiko Bank

  • Which three things would you single out that, in your opinion, marked the business of Addiko Bank in 2021?

The year 2021 was a year of adjusting the business to the new kovid reality, and in these circumstances Addiko Bank managed to achieve growth. For example, compared to 2019, the growth of cash loans is 22 percent. This is very important to us, having in mind our strategic orientation and aspiration to be recognized as specialists in cash loans on the Serbian banking market. When someone thinks of cash loans, we want to think of Addiko.

We constantly monitor customer needs and offer innovative solutions through simple and practical digital products.

Next to mKredita, savings, mAccount i mAllowed overdraft, in 2021 we also offered clients a web loan. Namely, clients submit a request through the website, after which, after approval, there is only one left to go to the branch. With this approach, we have responded to the needs of clients, who can get a preliminary offer online, without going to the bank.

In addition, I would like to highlight the fact that in 2021 we joined the United Nations initiative “Principles for the Empowerment of Women”. Addiko Bank is committed to gender equality in everyday work, which can be seen in our organization through the growing presence of women in senior management positions.

  • Addiko Bank is considered a pioneer in the digitalization of banking. What specifically do you offer clients so that you are always available to them?

Addiko Bank was among the first to recognize the potential of digitalization and we have positioned ourselves as one of the leaders in this field. We are proud to have offered our clients a digital bank in the palm of their hand, so that everything that they traditionally went to the branch for years – banks can now do completely online, just use the bank’s mobile application.

Client wants to open an account? He doesn’t have to go to the bank, he solves everything through a few steps in the mobile application of Addiko Bank. Does the client need additional cash? Through a very simple, fast and secure process, we have completely digitized both applying for and obtaining a loan, so that, thanks to video identification, going to the bank is not necessary. We are especially proud of the fact that our clients can apply for a cash loan on weekends, while, for example, they are buying furniture with their family. The response to the request arrives very quickly, as well as the cash on the account – in just a few minutes. It couldn’t be easier! Also, our clients can deposit their funds, apply for the allowed minus, etc. via the application and without going to the bank.

The world is changing every day, and sales and communication channels with customers are evolving in favor of digitalization. Our goal is to follow that wave and build a partnership with our current and future clients.

  • You have highlighted web credit as one of your key products. What makes it specific and is the method of online application intended only for individuals?

Web credit reconciles the need for digitization and the need for traditional contact in the credit negotiation process. In the first half of the year, we launched this product intended for individuals, and we are ending 2021 by offering a similar process to our business standard segment, ie. small business. We are especially proud of that, because the needs for digitalization of this segment are insufficiently recognized by banks in Serbia, and small businesses are the engine of development of our society. The bottom line is that small businesses also need a lot of support. We have recognized this and are offering them the opportunity to receive a preliminary offer of credit products online, without going to the bank and without collecting documentation.

  • This year, Addiko Bank, as part of a large Addiko Group, celebrated its fifth birthday. Were the results “for five”?

We would not like to evaluate ourselves, but we can say that we are satisfied with the results so far. Addiko Bank also recorded growth in the retail business, as well as in the segment of small and medium enterprises. We are making good progress and we have recorded an increase in both revenues and fees, and we also have a decrease in the ratio (income and expenditure ratio), which is significantly lower compared to 2020 and 2019. In terms of financial results, in the first nine months we made a net profit of 5.5 million euros.

  • From the beginning of 2021, the events on the banking market of Serbia are especially dynamic – the number of banks has been reduced to 24, and until twenty years ago, there were three times as many. What does this mean for clients and how does it affect the quality of banking services?

The number of banks has been declining in the last 20 years, and have banking services been degraded? I wouldn’t say. We had three times as many banks, and the banking sector was weaker. Meanwhile, banks have grown, but so has the quality of services. In essence, it can be concluded that the process of enlarging the banking market is a trend that is happening throughout the region and is inevitable, and it turned out that it is not bad for the bank or for clients.

  • Since you are a bank committed to innovation, how do you view the relationship between traditional banks and the fintek sector? Is it about fierce rivalry and fighting for clients or is there room for cooperation?

World practices tell us that the cooperation of traditional banks and the fintek sector is a space for symbiosis, so we are definitely not talking about fierce rivalry. Simply, the needs for the services of traditional banks cannot cease to exist, because banks perform a lot of complex financial tasks, and in addition to lending, there are also savings. First of all, trust is important.

  • What would you say to clients, colleagues and associates that they can expect financially in 2022?

Probably the biggest area of ​​interest, especially for end users, is the price of food and energy, given that the second half of the current year was marked by rising inflation. In that sense, I would be optimistic and tell them that there is no room for fear, because Serbia expects dynamic economic growth next year, which will be above the level of inflation, which puts our country in a good position.

  • Can we expect new steps and surprises from Addiko Bank in 2022 as well?

Of course, we are full of surprises. We try to always think outside the box and that this approach is reflected in our portfolio of products and services, as well as in our communication with clients and the overall experience we create with them. The focus will definitely remain on the segment of individuals and small and medium enterprises, as well as on further digitalization of processes and products.

Source: BIZLife Magazine

Source: BIZlife by www.bizlife.rs.

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