The Bank of the Philippine Islands held the first BPI Sustainability Summit last September 17, 2015 underscoring the 164-year-old bank’s commitment to creating shared value as a cornerstone of its business.
BPI is the first financial institution in the country to organize a sustainability summit, during which the bank reported its sustainability performance and initiatives, and how sustainability has become imbued in its various products, services, and financial advisory. The summit also served as a platform for leading global banks to share their experience in incorporating sustainability into their business model.
“We continue to empower our people to innovate services, systems and products that address the nation’s biggest sustainable development challenges—poverty, food security, climate change, ecosystems degradation, among others—while generating significant value for our business and shareholders,” noted BPI President and CEO Cezar P. Consing, in his joint message with BPI Chairman Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala in the 2014 BPI Sustainability Report.
BPI has focused its sustainability efforts on three areas where it could deliver most impact as a financial institution—financial wellness, financial inclusion, and sustainable development initiatives.
Through financial advisory and innovative and suitable products and solutions, BPI aims to help every Filipino attain a strong financial foundation, and build financially healthy and productive lives. These offerings are designed to foster a culture of saving, responsible borrowing, informed investing, and protection of assets.
As a result of efforts in this area, for 2014, BPI reported, among others:
67% increase in its Save-Up accounts. A Save-Up account is linked to a regular ATM-based savings account, and serves as a recipient account to where a fixed amount, as determined by the card holder, is transferred from the regular account on a weekly or monthly basis.
40% growth in OFWs’ investment in BPI Asset Management’s Regular Subscription Program, an investment program that allows the account holder to purchase units for an investment fund account on a monthly or quarterly basis.
BPI continues to give particular attention to the low-income segment—its Easy Saver deposit product, which does not require a maintaining balance, helps individuals start a relationship of trust with the bank. In 2014, the bank’s total savings volume attributed to Easy Saver accounts increased by 27%, contributed by a 14% increase in the number of accounts.
Sustainable Development Initiatives
BPI has taken deliberate steps to enable investments that foster sustainable development, especially in the countryside. Of the total financial services provided in 2014, P94 billion went to investments in the countryside, boosting wholesale and retail trade, agriculture, manufacturing, real estate, and other business activities.
The bank also financed P27.5-billion worth of investments in renewable energy, energy efficiency, and climate resilience.
“We realize the extent of change we seek to create sustainable value for our clients, for the environment, for society, and for our stakeholders via our various activities,” added Mr. Consing. “What we achieved in 2014 inspires us to do more in the coming years.”