In 2017, BancoEstado extended its network of coverage to places that, due to their socioeconomic or geographical characteristics, previously fell outside the financial system. In this way, the Bank is able to contribute to the country’s development and the well-being of its inhabitants.
The Bank has also expanded the number of products and services it offers, providing access to financial services to over 12 million people and 700,000 companies, institutions and civil society organizations.
Means of payment
Throughout its history, BancoEstado has provided millions of families with formal access to the financial system. In this context, it has fostered growth of debit card use, particularly through the CuentaRUT accounts.
Over 21 million debit cards and some 13 million credit cards issued by the banking system are currently in use. Other more traditional products such as current accounts and savings accounts are growing at a more moderate rate, reaching 4 million and 16 million products, respectively.
With over 11 million debit cards, corresponding mostly to a CuentaRUT account, BancoEstado accounts for over half the cards in use in the system. In 2017, 700,000 new clients joined the financial system through a CuentaRUT, bringing the total number of these accounts to 10.2 million. In addition to the increase in the opening of CuentaRUT accounts, there is also a trend towards their more frequent use and, therefore, more transactions associated with them.
CuentaRUT is a personal account which, because it has no requirements as regards income or commercial history, provides millions of people with access to the financial system which they would otherwise lack. As well as being inclusive, it allows them to make deposits, transfer money, receive payment of their income (wages, pensions, subsidies and benefits), pay for services, shop from retailers and use ATMs, among other operations. Its debit card is available to women as from age 12 and men as from 14.
Profile of CuentaRUT holders: Over 10.2 million users
- 700,000 new clients incorporated into the financial system through a CuentaRUT
- 67% of Chile’s inhabitants (women over 12 years of age and men over 14) have a CuentaRUT
- 52% of users are women
- 93% of young people between the ages of 12 and 24
- 32% live in rural or remote areas
- 71% have a monthly income of less than $400,000 or have no personal income (housewives, young people or people who do not declare income)
- 429,000 are immigrants
- 54% do not owe money to the banking system (without SBIF-registered debt)
- 84% of accounts registered movements in the last six months
- 93% of accounts have a positive balance
In addition to BancoEstado’s over 10 million CuentaRUT holders, close to 1.2 million people have a sight account known as “electronic checkbook” and 660,000 have a current account.
As a result, almost all the country’s adult population uses some financial product and BancoEstado provides these products to 87% of the population. In addition, 71% of the Bank’s clients have a monthly income of less than $400,000. In the financial system in general, 58% of the adult population has some product with an income requirement but nine in ten of BancoEstado’s clients have products without income-related restrictions.
The Report on Financial Inclusion in Chile (SBIF, August 2016) found that 98% of Chile’s adult population uses some financial product and that BancoEstado provides these products to 87% of the population. It also noted that 35% of clients use exclusively BancoEstado.
The mass use of means of payment has meant that banks have had to develop the services provided through electronic channels, which have lower operating costs than face-to-face attention and make for greater efficiency.
As well as strengthening financial inclusion, BancoEstado has seen an important increase in the number of transactions it processes. In the last quarter of 2017, for example, it processed over 200 million transactions each month, up by 23% on 2016.
Particularly heavy use is made of channels like CajaVecina and the Bank’s Internet and mobile portals, which process around 100 million transactions a month. These channels are complemented by different technological applications such as PagoRUT, which have resulted in an increase in the use of mobile phones and/or computers for different financial and administrative operations.
At present, BancoEstado has 2,442 ATMs which process approximately 16 million transactions a month. In addition, its clients use the ATMs of other banks for around a further 13 million transactions.
Out of the monthly average of some 190 million transactions carried out by the Bank’s clients in 2017, close to 90% corresponded to automated transactions.
Insurance for all
As of December 2017, BancoEstado had 8.6 million insurance policies in force and a total of 3.7 million insurance holders. This represented an increase of 6% on the previous year.
One in four of Chile’s inhabitants has insurance protection and, in line with its objective of fostering inclusion and access to this product, BancoEstado has the largest number of insurance holders.
BancoEstado Corredores de Seguros S.A. accounts for 14% of the premiums brokered by the country’s bank insurance brokers.
In the natural disasters that have affected the country, BancoEstado and its subsidiary have worked in close coordination and collaboration with insurance companies and the liquidators in line with a plan to solve contingencies in the shortest possible time when an event of this type occurs. In these situations, the insurance brokered by the Bank’s subsidiary typically accounts for around 40% of the claims filed.
In the case of innovations, the Bank launched a Serious Illness Insurance product in October. Designed to protect clients and their dependents, it covers 15 different illnesses, complementing the other insurance protection offered by the Bank.
BancoEstado Corredores de Seguros also created a Collective Fire and Additional Insurance product for educational establishments with loans guaranteed by the government’s Economic Development Agency (CORFO). The principal purpose of this insurance, which covers the building and its content against fire, is to provide continuity to the establishment’s educational work in the event of damage to its infrastructure.
Finally, a new BancoEstado Insurance Portal was launched, offering a better user experience. Through it, users can take out the Obligatory Personal Accident Insurance (SOAP) required for car owners and Daily Income for Hospitalization, Oncology and Home Protection coverage. In addition, there is a telephone service through which clients can report claims.
BancoEstado’s network consists of 415 branch offices across all the country’s regions, 107 ServiEstado points of service, 25,068 CajaVecina points and 2,460 ATMs. In addition, it has a branch office in New York.
BancoEstado has branches in 261 municipal districts that, together, account for over 95% of the country's population. In 134 of these districts, with a population of 2.9 million, BancoEstado is the only bank with a branch office. Fifteen of these branch offices were established more than a century ago.
Universal Access Program
Under the infrastructure plan associated with the Bank’s Universal Client Service Program, 233 accessible branches and 35 universal branches.
A universal branch is one that permits egalitarian attention. They have double-height service counters and tills as well as infrastructure for autonomous access and movement within the branch such as ramps, vertical platforms and tactile paving.
The Bank has also incorporated a georeferencing system in its public website and its app.
Between 2014 and October 2018, BancoEstado opened 56 new branch offices, expanding its network to a total of 415 branches. This is in contrast with the rest of the banking sector which closed some 286 branch offices over the same period.
There are CajaVecina points of service in all the country’s municipal districts including Antarctica and, in those places without bank branch offices, they provide the only access to banking services.
As part of its role of providing “support to the state”, BancoEstado has signed an agreement with Chile’s National Healthcare Fund (FONASA) under which vouchers for attention can be acquired at CajaVecina points of service. As of November 2018, they had issued more than 1.1 million vouchers in a year.
BancoEstado’s network of 2,460 ATMs is the largest in the country and, in 90 of the country’s municipal districts, it is the only provider of this service. This channel reaches an availability of 96% in the network.
In 2017, BancoEstado’s lending to smaller companies reached $3.3 billion, up by 8.6% in real terms on the previous year. Similarly, the number of micro and small business clients with financing for their businesses, at 263,000, represented an increase of 8.3%.
BancoEstado developed an Entrepreneur Account which enables small early-stage businesses to manage their cash better. It already has 69,000 users.
New lending products:
In the non-financial area, over 200,000 women are registered with the CreceMujer Entrepreneur program while, through the Entrepreneurs Network community, more than 22,000 entrepreneurs access permanent training on business issues as well as using this platform to find new partners for their company’s growth and develop new business opportunities (www.empresariosenred.cl).
In 2017, BancoEstado also held face-to-face meetings and training sessions for smaller companies. The more than 140 activities, which took place around the country, were attended by over 16,000 micro and small entrepreneurs. Activities specifically for women entrepreneurs were also held, attracting more than 2,500 attendees.
The Bank also organized the thirteenth version of the BancoEstado Entrepreneur Award through which it recognizes entrepreneurs from around the country as a means of drawing attention to the importance and value they have for the country’s development and their own well-being.
Entrepreneurship and Innovation Platform
BancoEstado has set itself the challenge of transforming the way it relates to clients and the context in which it operates, deepening universal access to financial services. In the case of smaller companies, this led it to develop an Entrepreneurship Platform which it launched in 2017 with a twofold purpose:
1. To contribute to the development of innovative entrepreneurship. Targeting start-ups or, in other words, those ventures that develop products or services with a global perspective and an important emphasis on online technologies and innovative business models, the Bank offers financial products and services for their scale-up.
2. To promote the links of these entrepreneurs and innovative organizations with traditional SMEs in a bid to enhance the latter’s opportunities and growth. Together with Fundación Chile, BancoEstado is working on four prototypes with innovative Chilean entrepreneurs:
- Electronic billing for grocery stores
- Financial order software for SMEs
- Dispatch system for e-commerce
- Online sales for beginners.
In 2017, BancoEstado also began working with financial technology companies which, through developments and products based on new technologies, can make a great contribution to the value proposition of banking institutions.
In 2017, over 606,000 micro businesses used the services of BancoEstado, up by 7.8% on end-2016. Out of these, 228,000 received financing from the Bank, which represented an increase of 15,000 on 2016 and of whom 57% were women. At $1,010,000 million, lending to the micro business segment showed a real 7.8% expansion, related to 128,000 new operations for $532,000 million that took place in 2017. In terms of coverage, the Bank has platforms in 262 branch offices, 6.13 more than in 2016, with a positive evaluation on the part of clients (90% with a score 6 or 7, according to an independent study).
As of end-2017, 50,900 small businesses, or close to 26% of those existing in the country, were clients of BancoEstado. During the year, close to 5,000 new small business owners were incorporated as clients with commercial loans. This represented an increase of 21% on end-2016 and took the total number with commercial loans to 30,500.
In 2017, 53,200 lending operations, worth a total of over $640,000 million, took place, increasing the stock of commercial lending to $999,000 million, equivalent to a real increase of 9.8%.
In the case of coverage, 21 new platforms specialized in the attention of small businesses were added in 2017, representing an increase of 24.4% on 2016 and taking the total around the country to 107.
According to small business clients, the Bank’s most important attribute is the direct attention they receive from their commercial executive. This is reflected in an 88% approval rating as measured in independent studies.
Active clients are defined as those who have some asset or liability product with BancoEstado, excluding savings accounts.
According to the National Tax Service (SII), there were 177,653 small businesses with sales in Chile in 2015, excluding the public administration and the financial intermediation sector. Based on the average annual growth rate of small businesses in 2005-2015, it is estimated that, by end-2017, the number had reached 192,617.
The Bank’s clients include almost 6,000 mid-sized companies of which two-thirds currently have loans. They are served through 17 platforms distributed around the country from Iquique in the north to Punta Arenas in the south.
Lending to this segment reaches close to $1.3 billion and, in 2017, grew by 8.8%. Out of the total, 56% corresponds to loans to clients in the regions. The Bank’s growth in this segment has been accompanied by a high level of customer satisfaction (81%).
In 2017, BancoEstado increased its market share in this segment from 7.1% to 8.3%. As a means of decentralizing decisions, credit committee meetings were held in different regions and members of the Executive Committee gave an account of the Bank’s progress to businesspeople from different parts of the country, sharing their concerns and view of their region.
CreceMujer Entrepreneur Program
The purpose of BancoEstado’s CreceMujer Program is to facilitate access to financial and non-financial services for women entrepreneurs and, in this way, contribute to the growth of their businesses. Since September 2015, the Program has been available in all branches as well as through the community website (www.crecemujer.cl) and by telephone on 800 835 000.
As of November 2017, 253,000 women from around Chile were registered with the Program, which operates on both a face-to-face and online basis. Out of this total, 186,000 had received guidance through BancoEstado branches and different activities implemented by the Program while over 67,000 access its benefits through the website. The website has already received more than 1.8 million visits and contains 1,500 articles and training videos on business management, financial education, technology and legal/tax issues as well as interesting content about state benefits and services.
As regards access to the financial system, over 103,000 women have received financing through the Bank’s services for micro and small businesses. In 2017, the Program also developed important ties with public and private players in order to continue advancing in offering women entrepreneurs face-to-face training and over 6,700 women participated in seminars on topics that included financial education, innovation, business management and women’s empowerment.
FOGAPE: Support for financing for small businesses
The Guarantee Fund for Small Businesspeople (FOGAPE), which is administered by BancoEstado and overseen by the Superintendency of Banks and Financial Institutions (SBIF), enabled 23 financial and guarantor institutions to undertake over 42,000 financing operations for a total of US$1,095 million in 2017, equivalent to approximately 25.1 million unidades de fomento (UF).
The guarantees involved in this financing are equivalent to US$797 million (approximately 18.3 million UF), comprising US$661 million (15.6 million UF) to micro and small companies and exporters and US$116 million (2.7 million UF) to mid-sized companies. In 2017, the Fund’s administrators also provided training in the use of FOGAPE for more than 700 executives from institutions in the formal financial system (IFIs) and reciprocal guarantee institutions (IGRS), including savings and loan cooperatives, as a means of improving their ability to attend micro, small and mid-sized businesses.
In this way, FOGAPE plays an important role in supporting financing for this segment through a range of financial institutions, including reciprocal guarantee institutions.
Since 2000, FOGAPE has carried out over 722,000 financing operations, providing guarantees of close to US$12,700 million for total financing of more than US$17,900 million.
FOGAPE targets micro, small and mid-sized enterprises that require financing for working capital or investment projects and eligible small exporters with similar financing and needs as well as associations of eligible small businesspeople who require financing for irrigation, drainage and infrastructure projects.
BancoEstado is the market leader in savings accounts, particularly among lower-income families. Some 9.3 million clients have a total of more than 11.5 million accounts, representing savings of $4.4 billion, equivalent to 89% of the amount held in all the savings accounts in the country’s banking system.
Nine out of ten active savings accounts in the system are with BancoEstado and 73% of its savings accounts have a balance of less than $100,000.
Through its subsidiary, BancoEstado S.A. Administradora General de Fondos (AGF), the Bank contributes to the development of saving and investment in mutual funds.
In order to serve the investment needs of companies and institutional investors, like the country’s private pension funds (AFPs) and insurance companies, the Bank has created a specialized area, thanks to which the balances held by clients of this type increased by 35% in November 2018.
Voluntary Pension Savings (APV)
In 2016, BancoEstado began to promote Voluntary Pension Savings (APV) in order to help workers improve their future pension.
Most of the institutions that offer APV products (AFPs, insurance companies and other fund administrators) target principally people in the upper part of the income scale, with a monthly income of over $3,000,000. As a result, a very large percentage of the population lacks an attractive alternative for saving towards their future pension. In line with its social role and inclusive character, BancoEstado has focused its APV alternative on Tax Regime A, which is recommended for workers in the middle and lower income brackets below $3,000,000 for whom the state provides an incentive equivalent to 15% of the annual amount they have themselves saved.
According to the Association of Mutual Fund Administrators, as of November end-2018, 127,847 new workers acquired a mutual fund APV product and 97% of them (123,455) did so at BancoEstado. As of November end-2018, 228,375 people had an APV with the Bank, which accounted for 52% of the market. This positions its fund administrator subsidiary as having the largest number clients among the 16 fund administrators that offer this product.
Most of these clients have regular savings contracts, which generates a stable increase in the APV balances managed by BancoEstado. These have been increased more than 6 times since December 2016 to $31,116 million and the Bank’s market share among the 16 administrators that offer APV rose from 0.23% to 1.29% in November 2018, leaving it still with ample room to grow in the coming years.
The use of digital technologies is growing ever more quickly and has penetrated all segments of clients. In line with this. BancoEstado’s Digital Banking area sought to promote and deepen relations with and among its clients in 2017.
During the year, 4.2 million clients used Internet (website) while 2.9 million used the Bank’s Web-Mobile platform and 1.5 million used its mobile application. They carried out a total of 911 million transactions, up by 23% on 2016.
In the banking system as a whole as regards Internet, the Bank accounted for an estimated 40% of clients and 35% of transactions.
BancoEstado App: One of Chile’s ten most downloaded applications
Chile has one of Latin America’s most developed mobile telephony markets, with a high penetration of smartphones and, therefore, potential for the use of mobile apps.
Since the launch of the BancoEstado App in September 2016, it has been downloaded 3.4 million times and, in November 2017, was used for 5.6 million transactions.
In 2017, the application achieved a number of milestones, expanding its range of services and products. In March 2017, its use, which initially required a CuentaRUT account, was extended to holders of accounts of all types, also enabling them to make transfers to other banks, and, in November, the payment of utilities was also incorporated.
At the same time, the Bank launched other mobile applications: App Beneficios Tarjetas (Card Benefits App) and App Ejecutivo en Línea (Executive Online App), which serve to strengthen ties with clients through the Bank’s digital platforms in line with its desire to be close to clients and offer them greater facilities when these are needed.
During the year, the Bank also introduced new digital services for clients: the TodoSuma portal, a loyalty program for credit card holders, and a Donations Portal through which people using one of BancoEstado’s means of payment can transfer money to different organizations that help vulnerable or poor sectors of the population. In addition, new services were added to the BancoEstado App, expanding the operations available to clients.
The Bank’s Social Networks platforms also underwent important development in 2017, consolidating their position as channels validated by the clients for relating to the Bank, whether in search of answers and advice or to express opinions about it.
BancoEstado is Chile’s leading bank in the use of Internet and mobile platforms in terms of both number of clients and volume of transactions.
In November 2017, the portal www.bancoestado.cl received 211 million visits, more than any other financial portal.
Over the course of the year, 4.2 million clients interacted with the website and, as a monthly average, 3.5 million people operated through it. This represented an increase of 9% on 2016.
BancoEstado has the country’s most visited Internet portal. The public access website receives over 120 million visits a month and is used for an average of 55 million transactions each month.
In 2017, an average of 1.7 million clients used this digital platform monthly and it had 2.9 million users.
A total of 214 million transactions were carried out through this platform in the first 11 months of 2017, up by 26% on the same period in the previous year.
During the year, more than 12 million text messages were sent to clients by different areas of the Bank, enabling it to maintain more timely relations with them in line with Chile’s position as an ever more connected country.
Important development was also seen in the PagoRUT application. This is one of the products with the greatest growth potential, thanks to the facilities it provides for use of CuentaRUT accounts.
PagoRUT: Innovating in mobile applications
The PagoRUT mobile application was launched at the end of 2016 and is now being used by over 10 million CuentaRUT clients. Through it, they can make and receive payments, in person or remotely, from any mobile device in the market, doing so easily, quickly and without cost.
By the end of 2017, more than 700,000 clients had used the application to check their balances and/or for transactions, including over 200,000 who had already used it to make payments.
This mobile application has a number of benefits both for the Bank and the country in that, it contributes to the digitization of cash, leverages financial inclusion by adding value to a CuentaRUT account, reduces transaction costs, allows clients to complete the full payment cycle through the Bank and adds value to the services it provides.
Social networks and telephony
Both the Bank’s telephone platform and its social networks platform play a fundamental role in the way it relates to people, whether or not they are clients. They operate 24/7, providing information and advice.
BancoEstado’s management of social networks has evolved in line with its desire to boost and deepen its ties with the community. It gives priority to the development and management of content tailored to the needs and interests of the community.
The Bank’s community on both Twitter and Facebook showed important growth in 2017, with fans and followers increasing by 98%. This implied over 170,000 new fans on Facebook and 41,930 new followers on Twitter. The Bank currently has 285,000 fans on its Fanpage while its official Twitter account has 145,000 followers. In 2017, the Bank also launched the BancoEstado Al Día corporate accounts on Twitter and Instagram, with the latest news about its activities.
Similarly, in a bid to harness new trends and strengthen its ties with the community in social networks, it posted a “Facebook Live” (transmission of a video in real time on Facebook) in September. This milestone, which sought to publicize the new features of the PagoRUT application, had a great impact, achieving historical engagement indicators and generating a high level of active participation on the part of users.
Important role in financial education
One of the Bank’s strategic lines of work, defined in 2014, is “to be an active promoter of financial education, positioning BancoEstado as a relevant agent in this field nationally”.
In line with this, it has implemented the En Fácil y en Chileno (Said Simply and in Chilean) program through which to foster understanding of financial concepts, using Internet and social networks as well as its branch offices for this purpose. To date it registers 2.1 million visits, 179,000 followers on Facebook and 28,000 on Twitter, this program constitutes the country’s largest financial education community. With articles and tutorials dubbed in sign language, Mapudungun and Creole as well as an online tool for budgeting and brochures available throughout the branch network, the program helps clients and non-clients to become familiar with this topic.
In addition, the Bank implements the Usa Bien Tu Plata (Use your Money Well) program as a means of teaching financial skills to secondary pupils at schools throughout the country. Since 2015, 750 schools and over 33,000 students have participated in the program, which is the only one of its type with countrywide coverage and in line with the OECD standard which requires initial and final evaluation of the participants.
The Bank’s work on financial education also includes numerous workshops for micro businesses, women participating in the CreceMujer program and employees of companies with which the Bank has an agreement.