BNP Paribas Leads in Client Proximity and Quality Advisory Services
Featuring Filipe Simao, Head of Client Advisory and Strategic Marketing | BNP Paribas
BNP Paribas has been quietly but steadily developing its market position and reputation over recent years, boosted substantially by the highly successful acquisition of Fortis Bank. BNP Paribas is noteworthy not only for the scope and depth of its pan-European network, but also the quality of service it provides to large corporate customers. In the recent Leader Awards by Greenwich Associates, BNP Paribas received the top ranking in both Market Penetration and Quality for Large Corporate Banking in Europe, bearing testimony to the bank’s commitment to support the evolving needs of its corporate customers. In this feature, Filipe Simao discusses his response to receiving these Awards and explores the elements that are positioning BNP Paribas for continuing success.
“We were delighted at such an encouraging result in the recent Greenwich Leader Awards. Being awarded top positions for both Market Penetration and Quality for Large Corporate Banking in Europe bears testimony to BNP Paribas’ stability throughout the crisis, our compelling strategy, service and product offering for our corporate customers, and the commitment of the BNP Paribas team across our network.”
Filipe Simao, Head of Client Advisory and Strategic Marketing | BNP Paribas
What is significant is not simply the number of countries in which the bank is present, but the depth of its services within these countries.
The Fortis acquisition was a major catalyst for BNP Paribas, bringing a significant new network in regions such as Central & Eastern Europe, where Fortis had a strong value proposition and a highly satisfied customer base. The bank’s geographic expansion has been an important element in these Awards, but what is significant is not simply the number of countries in which the bank is present, but the depth of its services within these countries. For example, BNP Paribas has more than 30 business centres in each of 16 countries, with a further 120 located in Belgium, France, Italy, Luxembourg, Poland and Turkey. This gives the bank unique proximity to its customers and enables it to anticipate, understand and respond to their evolving needs, as well as delivering a highly personal service. In parallel, BNP Paribas’ Cash Customer Service provide dedicated, multilingual support by specialists with extended hours. Filipe Simao outlines the value of this approach to BNP Paribas’ customers,
“The combination of local and centralised services enables us to mirror our customer operations, supporting both head office and subsidiaries in an efficient and timely fashion, whilst maintaining a high degree of personal contact.”
“Another key factor in BNP Paribas’ ongoing success, particularly in terms of quality of service, is our growing focus on advisory services, which is proving a significant differentiator. When combined with our proximity to customers, strong relationship management, and strength of solutions and services, the value proposition to customers is unparalleled, as reflected in these Awards. Adopting a more consultative approach with our customers means that we can construct and deliver solutions that recognise the specific needs and ambitions of each customer, and deliver tangible value.”
Many initiatives on which customers are embarking today are well-established, such as payment factories; however, with industry developments such as SEPA, the PSD and financial messaging standards, combined with a desire to increase efficiency, control and cost-effectiveness, a wider spectrum of customers are seeking to leverage these opportunities. BNP Paribas brings a wealth of knowledge, advice and solutions for payment factories, based on many years of experience with some of the most innovative companies in the world. The bank has been providing services to payment factories since the late 90s. Today, it has more SWIFTNet FileAct customers than any other bank.
More generally, BNP Paribas continues to be a pioneer in new developments that adds direct benefit to its customers. Filipe Simao explains,
“We were delighted that our customer EDF was awarded the Treasury Today Adam Smith Award for the eBAM (electronic bank account management) pilot project, which they conducted with BNP Paribas. This is just one illustration of our commitment to go beyond core banking activities to find new ways of adding value to our customers.”
Looking ahead, BNP Paribas is poised to extend its coverage further, not only in terms of geographic reach, but also in the range and depth of service it is able to provide. For example, the bank is looking at new initiatives to harmonise multi-domestic collections management, which has proved very difficult in the past, but creates significant opportunities for cost savings and greater control over both counterparty risk and working capital metrics. The bank will continue to pioneer developments such as eBAM and TWIST’s electronic billing standard (BSB) which is in live operation amongst BNP Paribas’ clients. Filipe Simao concludes,
“In the future, we will be introducing an innovative new electronic portal, supporting multiple business lines, such as cash and trade, through a single sign-in, enabling our customers to leverage synergies across the elements that contribute to an efficient financial supply chain.
We are committed to developing new domestic markets, such as Germany and the Netherlands, in addition to our existing domestic markets in France, Italy, Belgium and Luxembourg.
We expect that our advisory and thought leadership role will continue to flourish. For example, the Cash Management University, hosted by BNP Paribas is now in its 4th year, and continues to attract senior treasurers, CFOs and finance managers from across Europe.”
The Cash Management University, 2010 will take place in Paris, France on 25-26 November. More information can be found at www.cashmanagementuniversity.com, and more details will appear