Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. transforms IT to gain 1.2M customers in one year

An IBM z10 Enterprise Class server and IBM middleware support new core banking system

Published on 22-Jul-2013

"The combination of Finacle and IBM gives us the functionality we want on a high-performance platform that is robust and resilient enough to handle the bank’s requirements moving forward." - Dennis Bancod, senior executive vice president and head for IT and operations, Rizal Commercial Banking Corp.

Customer:
Rizal Commercial Banking Corp.

Industry:
Banking

Deployment country:
Philippines

Solution:
Big Data & Analytics, Big Data & Analytics: Improve IT, DevOps, Mobile, System z Software

IBM Business Partner:
Infosys Ltd.

Overview

Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. (RCBC), headquartered in Makati City, the Philippines, was established in 1960. The bank provides a range of banking and financial products and services for commercial and retail customers. It is currently the fourth-largest private domestic bank in the Philippines by assets and has approximately 420 branches and 5,000 employees nationwide.

Business need:
RCBC needed an IT infrastructure to support a core-banking system, called Finacle, from IBM Business Partner Infosys Ltd. that would help the bank improve efficiency, launch products faster and attain 10 million customers.

Solution:
An IBM® z10™ Enterprise Class platform and a range of IBM middleware products provide scalability, security and consistent performance at the high levels required by Infosys and RCBC.

Benefits:
RCBC reduced new product launch times by 50 percent and increased its readiness to effectively compete in the marketplace, moving two to three years ahead of its competition.

Case Study

Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. (RCBC), headquartered in Makati City, the Philippines, was established in 1960. The bank provides a range of banking and financial products and services for commercial and retail customers. It is currently the fourth-largest private domestic bank in the Philippines by assets and has approximately 420 branches and 5,000 employees nationwide.

Achieving ambitious growth plans through IT and business innovation

The battle for market share in the retail banking sector in the Philippines is being fought on two fronts. On one, banks race to keep pace with the requirements of sophisticated customers with evolving needs who expect anywhere-anytime mobile access to banking products and services. On the other lies the massive and untapped potential of the country’s “unbanked” population, the 80 percent of Filipinos, approximately 80 million individuals and small-business operators, who traditionally can’t afford to deposit their money in a bank because of minimum balance requirements or fees imposed on small accounts.

RCBC saw innovation, both business and technical, as its key to winning on both fronts and to achieving an ambitious goal of adding 10 million new customers to its existing base. The bank’s customer data and applications, however, ran on fragmented and siloed IT systems, impeding innovation by making information sharing difficult and slowing decision making.

“One of our biggest issues was our inability to get a single customer view,” says Dennis Bancod, senior executive vice president and head for IT and operations of RCBC. “We needed to leverage technology to provide a 360-degree view of each customer and our relationship with them in order to provide personalized service and products and be more flexible in how we deliver them.”

In addition to its lack of customer intelligence, it sometimes took the bank more than one month to introduce new products, jeopardizing its position as a market leader.

A robust IT platform for banking

RCBC needed a new integrated core-banking system, and it found one in the Finacle system provided by IBM Business Partner Infosys Ltd. The bank’s existing IT infrastructure, however, was neither powerful nor scalable enough to support the Finacle system, nor could it handle the workloads arising from the growth that RCBC anticipated.

Finacle would provide all core-banking functionality and flexibility the bank needed to adapt its products and services to different customers’ needs. And, even though it represented a first-of-its-kind implementation, RCBC elected to run the Finacle solution on the IBM z10 Enterprise Class server platform and use zLinux with IBM DB2® for z/OS data server. “DB2 for z/OS utilizes Parallel Sysplex® architecture with 99.999 percent availability and near linear scalability, so we felt very confident,” says Bancod.

RCBC also uses a range of IBM Tivoli® storage and performance management, monitoring and optimization products, viewing events on a single dashboard, thereby proactively preventing the occurrence of critical incidents. The bank uses IBM Rational Team Concert™ software for version control of Finacle customized code and non-Finacle application code. For the noncore banking applications, the business uses a Rational Team Concert software workflow to track the development process, from code checkout to promotion to the target environment.

Additionally, the bank employs IBM Rational® Build Forge® software to deploy Finacle patches to the test and production environments. It also uses it to build the executable file of the non-Finacle applications for deployment in the test environment and for promoting those objects in production.

IT scalability, security and resiliency supports unprecedented agility

“The combination of Finacle and IBM gives us the functionality we want on a high-performance platform that is robust and resilient enough to handle the bank’s requirements moving forward,” Bancod says, specifying two RCBC initiatives as examples: mobile banking and a new product, “MyWallet.”

According to Bancod, leading banks in the Philippines are extending their business beyond traditional brick-and-mortar branches, so RCBC is now working to make its banking solutions available on iPads and other mobile devices. “By leveraging mobile banking, social media and social networking, we’ll reach more people and create more customers. With Finacle and IBM, we can support that.”

MyWallet is a product designed to serve the unbanked and is critical to achieving the RCBC retail banking group’s goal of 10 million new customers. It is an all-in-one card that allows individuals to perform transactions, such as withdrawals, cashless shopping and bill payment, without maintaining a minimum balance. The cardholder also incurs no penalties for withdrawing all the money in his account.

“The unbanked need not go into an RCBC branch for us to give him banking services. We can go to him where he is,” says Bancod, while pointing out that MyWallet generated 1.2 million new customers in one year. “I don’t think there’s anything in the market, other than IBM System z® and DB2, that’s robust and scalable enough to handle this kind of exponential growth in volume.”

The bank seeks to add four million additional MyWallet customers in the coming year. “This is exactly the type of business innovation we need to reach our goals,” Bancod says. “With Finacle, we now have the customer insights we need to develop these types of products and the agility to bring them to market in half the time, putting us two to three years ahead of our competition. And with those capabilities supported by the scalability, resilience and security embedded in IBM System z, we are now ready to truly be the ‘Bank of Tomorrow’.”

For more information

To learn more about z10 Enterprise Class Server, Tivoli and Rational please contact your IBM representative or IBM Business Partner, or visit the following website: ibm.com/software/systemz

IBM Global Financing can help you acquire the software capabilities that your business needs in the most cost-effective and strategic way possible. We'll partner with credit-qualified clients to customize a financing solution to suit your business and development goals, enable effective cash management, and improve your total cost of ownership. For more information, visit: ibm.com/financing

Legal Information

© Copyright IBM Corporation 2013 IBM Corporation Software Group Route 100 Somers, NY 10589 Produced in the United States of America July 2013 IBM, the IBM logo, ibm.com, Build Forge, DB2, OMEGAMON, Rational, Rational Team Concert, System z, Tivoli, WebSphere, z/OS, and z10 are trademarks of International Business Machines Corp., registered in many jurisdictions worldwide. Other product and service names might be trademarks of IBM or other companies. A current list of IBM trademarks is available on the web at “Copyright and trademark information” at ibm.com/legal/copytrade.shtml This document is current as of the initial date of publication and may be changed by IBM at any time. Not all offerings are available in every country in which IBM operates. The client examples cited are presented for illustrative purposes only. Actual performance results may vary depending on specific configurations and operating conditions. It is the user’s responsibility to evaluate and verify the operation of any other products or programs with IBM products and programs. THE INFORMATION IN THIS DOCUMENT IS PROVIDED “AS IS” WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING WITHOUT ANY WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND ANY WARRANTY OR CONDITION OF NON-INFRINGEMENT. IBM products are warranted according to the terms and conditions of the agreements under which they are provided. Statements regarding IBM’s future direction and intent are subject to change or withdrawal without notice, and represent goals and objectives only.