Standard Chartered Bank restructures as transactional business bleeds

HARARE- Reports indicate that Standard Chartered bank Zimbabwe is restructuring its operations with job losses already incurred due to the exercise.

The bank is in the process of migrating some of its operation from Zimbabwe to India, China and Malaysia, according to Bloomberg.

The migration of operations has reportedly resulted in a loss of 20 jobs so far with the publication quoting corporate affairs head Lillian Hapanyengwi as having confirmed the move, whose communication was via an internal circular.

In her response Hapanyengwi said outsourcing some activities to the parent’s global business services division is aimed at trimming costs as more customers embrace digital banking.

The bank has not been as aggressive in upgrading its systems and rolling out mainly digital products and the restructuring exercise may be a move towards repositioning of the bank or streamlining the unit in light of low transactional business.

In the just ended financial year Stan Chart lost significant ground in transactional business thus lowering income from non-funded business.

Where the bank has been less aggressive in rolling out ICT infrastructure to support transactional business the broader industry has taken a more aggressive stance, with 80% of the banks upgrading their systems as well as enhancing their ICT capacities to process more transactions and launch more customer centric products.

Migration of operations may also result in higher management costs for the bank which could be further weighed by forex shortages. In 2016 Stan Chart reported a huge management fee which dwarfed profitability.

Respect Gwenzi

Respect is the Lead Analyst and Managing Director at Equity Axis. He has 8 years experience in respective fields of finance and media. Particular areas of expertise include Asset Management, Stockbroking and Financial Media. Respect is on a mission to change the course of Financial Media in Africa through digitalization

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