Monday December 29, 2008
AmBank banking on new products to boost deposit base
By SHANNEN WONG
AMBANK (M) Bhd hopes to grow its deposit base with the launch of three products – Family First, AmStar Extreme and “auto pay-win”.
Head of retail distribution Brad Gravell said the bank was currently putting up an integrated strategy to promote its new deposit products.
This is to position itself as one of the top three banks for the current account segment in the next 12 months from sixth now.
“We want the existing customers to choose us as their core bank for current and savings accounts,” he told StarBiz.
AmBank will next month launch the first phase “transact and save” of its Family First plan, which offers interest rate of 3.5% per annum.
“We aim to help young families, specifically the low and middle-income group, to consistently save in minimum blocs of RM50,” Gravell said, adding that over 6,000 had signed up for the plan even before the launch.
Additionally, AmBank had recently re-launched its “auto pay-win” solutions, which help small and medium enterprises of 50 to 100 employees to manage their payroll processes.
By providing this product, AmBank enabled small businesses to distribute payrolls through AmStar Extreme or other savings and current accounts in the bank, he said.
In the last six months, AmBank posted 12% growth in its current account deposits. Currently, it has 1.9 million holders for current and savings accounts, out of 3.5 million in the retail segment.
In line with its effort to grow deposit base in the retail market, AmBank is offering attractive discount packages for employees whose employer has chosen to use “auto pay-win”.
AmStar Extreme offers account holders free first five cash withdrawals via the 8,000 Malaysian Electronic Payment System-linked automated teller machines and free first five funds transfer via online inter-bank Giro transactions every month.
Meanwhile, the bank plans to partner some institutions to open full-fledged Islamic branches in Kuala Lumpur and Kota Baru by June.
Currently, it has Islamic banks in Putrajaya and Bangi and a total of 186 branches nationwide.
In the long term, it is particularly interested in the east coast states, especially Terengganu and Kelantan.