Indonesian digital lender Neo Commerce targets full-year profit in 2023

JAKARTA, Nov 4 (Reuters) – Indonesian digital lender PT Bank Neo Commerce (BBYB.JK) (BNC) expects to post its first full-year profit next year since launching its online services in 2021, its chairman said -director, even as industry lenders compete to offer high deposit rates in order to attract customers.

Southeast Asia’s largest economy has seen double-digit growth in digital banking transactions over the past few years, with transactions in 2022 expected to grow by 30% to 53,144 trillion rupees (3.38 trillion rupees). dollars), according to central bank data.

Backed by technology company PT Akulaku Silvrr Indonesia, part of China’s Alibaba Group, BNC expects to end 2023 with a profit of 30 billion rupees to 50 billion rupees, Chief Executive Officer Tjandra Gunawan said in an interview on Thursday, after her first trimester of three months. net profit in the third quarter.

The lender said it has more than 20 million customers, although in 2023 it aims to increase the proportion of monthly active users of its app to more than 50% from 30% to 40% currently by offering new products such as small business loans. and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

“User numbers are important, but ensuring customer loyalty is more important,” Tjandra said.

By comparison, Gojek’s rival bank, Bank Jago (ARTO.JK), had nearly 4 million customers in August.

Tjandra also promised that its high deposit rate of up to 8% per annum would not be exceptional.

“The (high interest rate) is not a promotion, it’s our product,” he said.

The BNC’s net interest margin (NIM), an indicator of profitability and at 12.7% in September, was sufficient even with high deposit rates, he said.

Sea Group’s digital bank SeaBank Indonesia is offering a 7% deposit rate, while Bank Jago offered a 7% rate for its savings products during a promotional period in August.

Suria Dharma, director of securities firm Samuel Sekuritas Indonesia, said a strategy of high deposit rates could pose a long-term challenge with the currently high cost of funds, which could hit the NIM of banks, so that global interest rates rise to control inflation. .

The BNC is targeting loan disbursement of 10-11 trillion rupees this year and up to 40% growth in 2023, Tjandra said.

But the lender is still expected to register an annual loss of around 500-600 billion rupees in December, Tjandra said.

($1 = 15,725.0000 rupees)

Reporting by Stefanno Sulaiman Editing by Ed Davies

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