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Bcg Banking 2020


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Bcg Banking 2020

  1. 1. R G C B Crisis as Opportunity
  2. 2. The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) is a global manage-ment consulting firm and the world’s leading advisor onbusiness strategy. We partner with clients in all sectorsand regions to identify their highest-value opportunities,address their most critical challenges, and transform theirbusinesses. Our customized approach combines deep in-sight into the dynamics of companies and markets withclose collaboration at all levels of the client organization.This ensures that our clients achieve sustainable compet-itive advantage, build more capable organizations, andsecure lasting results. Founded in 1963, BCG is a privatecompany with 69 offices in 40 countries. For more infor-mation, please visit
  3. 3. Crisis as Opportunity G C B  Jürgen E. Schwarz Martin Buchar Gennaro Casale Oliver Dany Keith Halliday Nicolas Harlé Junichi Iwagami Duncan Martin Matthew Rogozinski Achim Schwetlick Tjun Tang June 2010
  4. 4. © The Boston Consulting Group, Inc. 2010. All rights reserved.For information or permission to reprint, please contact BCG at:E-mail: bcg-info@bcg.comFax: +1 617 850 3901, attention BCG/PermissionsMail: BCG/Permissions The Boston Consulting Group, Inc. One Beacon Street Boston, MA 02108 USA
  5. 5. ContentsExecutive Summary 5Megatrends Shaping the Corporate Banking Landscape 8Globalization 2.0 8The New Economy 9Advancing Technology 10Fallout from the Crisis 11The Lessons of the Crisis 15The New-Normal Regulatory Environment 17The Blue-Chip Corporate Bank: How Top InstitutionsAre Positioning Themselves to Win 18Building Premium Client Relationships 18Creating a Culture of Risk Awareness and Accountability 19Enhancing Transaction Banking Capabilities 20Forging the Next-Generation Operating Model 22Developing End-to-End Transparency and a High-Performance Organization 23Conclusion: Asymmetric Competition and How the LeadersWill Deepen Their Advantage 26For Further Reading 27Note to the Reader 28C  O 
  6. 6.  T B C G
  7. 7. Executive SummaryT he publication of Crisis as Opportunity, BCG’s crisis or even those that enjoy modestly higher margins in the fourth report on the global corporate-banking near term. The winners will be those that actually leverage industry, comes at a time when the priority of the market dynamics brought on by the downturn to their ad- many corporate-banking leaders is shifting vantage, internalizing the lessons and sharpening their strat- from damage control to finding ways to capital- egies, processes, and value propositions for the long haul. Thisize on opportunities created by the global financial crisis. report focuses on the steps that corporate banks must take to rise to this challenge.The downturn has obviously been painful for the corporatebanking business. And difficulties stemming from slow eco- As in the past, our report draws on BCG’s Global Corporate-nomic growth in some countries, the financial distress of Banking Benchmarking Database, covering more than 100clients, and lagging corporate loan losses—which can financial institutions around the world. The database trackspeak months or years aer economic recovery begins—will global trends and helps identify the best practices of the mostcontinue. sophisticated corporate banks operating in the most challeng- ing markets.Nonetheless, the crisis has so far been surprisingly good tomany corporate-banking business units. Many of the partici- In the postcrisis era, corporate banks must fully grasppants in our global benchmarking exercise conducted in early the trends that will weigh heaviest on their industry.2010 reported rising economic profit from the end of 2007 The most powerful forces (or “megatrends”) are thethrough 2009, even in countries that were particularly hard- continuing process of globalization, the shiing eco-hit by the so-called Great Recession. This improvement was nomic and industry structures of the new economy,mostly attributable to significant increases in lending mar- and technological progress. In addition to these inter-gins (which will likely fade as the financial sector and real connected forces, banks must also grapple with theeconomy build on the progress they showed in the first quarter harsh fallout from the crisis and with the evolving,of 2010). Also, in many cases, loan losses have not thus far stricter regulatory environment. All of these dynam-been as bad as originally feared. ics will determine how corporate banks navigate the next decade.Yet one thing is certain: we are entering a new competitiveenvironment as banks try to seize the opportunities created ◊ The effects of “globalization 2.0” on corporate banksby the crisis. Success will oen come at the expense of weaker will be significant. Even relatively small companiesrivals. Moreover, a key factor will be the strength of the par- will participate, oen as part of intricate, far-reachingent bank’s balance sheet in supporting the growth ambitions supply chains. Growing enterprises, such as thoseof the corporate banking business unit. But having a strong based in Brazil, Russia, India, and China (the BRICbalance sheet will not be enough to succeed. countries), will need a full range of sophisticated bank- ing services. The potential revenues to be gained fromIndeed, the most successful corporate banks over the next few these trends will be sizable, but capturing them willyears will not necessarily be those that have best survived the require a nimble and creative approach.C  O 
  8. 8. ◊ Five key aspects of the new economy will exert the banking executives, BCG has identified a number of greatest impact on corporate banks: increasing com- axioms that corporate banks would do well to re- petitive intensity, industry-specific banking needs, on- member. going consolidation, closer supply-chain integration, and the search for top talent. ◊ These axioms include: keep risk at the top of the agen- da, manage your businesses to maintain a balanced◊ Despite continuing advances in technology, very few portfolio with an “over the cycle” point of view, be ex- corporate banks have the platforms in place to ensure tra cautious in forays outside of home markets, and leading functionality and connectivity for clients, as above all, cultivate deep client relationships. well as efficient and effective sales-to-service process- es. These shortcomings result from a variety of factors, ◊ Our research with corporate banking clients indicates including investment limits and the low priority of the that many are reviewing their banking relationships, corporate banking unit compared with the bank’s (usu- seeking to “diversify their portfolio” with multiple ally larger) retail business unit. Corporate banks must banks. Clients are also more conscious of the need to reverse this trend in order to become market leaders. choose banks with strong balance sheets and reputa- tions, so that they will not become collateral damageThe financial crisis has had a devastating effect on in a bank’s next liquidity crunch.many banks overall, but its impact on corporate bank-ing business units has been more nuanced. There The regulatory response to the crisis remains a workhave been winners and losers. in progress. But it is virtually certain that a climate of greater conservatism and risk avoidance will prevail◊ About one-third of business units in BCG’s Global Cor- and that new regulations will have a material impact porate-Banking Benchmarking Database increased on the corporate banking industry. Reporting require- their economic profit between the end of 2007 and the ments will become increasingly onerous—placing an- end of 2009. Even as sister business units wrote down other burden on finance and risk analysts serving the mortgage-backed securities or suffered severe consum- corporate banking business unit, as well as on front- er-lending losses, many corporate banks successfully line sales staff. repriced corporate loans, attracted new loan and de- posit volume, and increased investment-banking and ◊ There are four interconnected issues whose regulation risk-management sales. Top performers enjoyed a prof- will significantly affect corporate banking: risk mea- it surge. surement (including risk-weighted assets, or RWA), capitalization, leverage ratio, and liquidity risk. The◊ For the broader group of survey participants—com- impact of changes in these areas will vary by product prising “typical” corporate banks—the crisis has and segment. brought a difficult operating environment. Assuming a rough long-term pretax capital hurdle rate of 12 per- ◊ It will be critical for corporate banking executives to cent, their economic profit is still well below 2007 lev- monitor developments and ensure that their banks re- els. But it rebounded in 2009 from the lows of 2008. tain the flexibility to respond to regulatory changes as they become finalized.◊ In terms of segment performance, in 2009, corporate banking business units serving the micro segment had The postcrisis era will witness the emergence of the by far the highest average return on regulatory capital, blue-chip corporate bank. followed by small- and mid-cap (at roughly the same level) and then by large-cap business units. The large- ◊ These banks will be the jewels in the portfolios of lead- cap segment was the toughest environment overall in ing universal financial institutions. They will generate which to create value. steady long-term profit growth thanks to superior busi- ness models, excellent risk-management capabilities,Aer reviewing the experiences of top performers and an overall approach that focuses on building a val-during the crisis and speaking with senior corporate- ue-creating corporate-banking franchise. T B C G
  9. 9. ◊ BCG’s case work and benchmarking efforts have iden- ager of the global Wholesale Banking segment in BCG’s tified five core priorities of the blue-chip corporate Toronto office. You may contact him by e-mail at halliday. bank that leading institutions are already embracing: Nicolas Harlé is a partner and manag- building premium client relationships, creating a cul- ing director in the firm’s Paris office. You may contact him ture of risk awareness and accountability, enhancing by e-mail at Junichi Iwagami is transaction banking capabilities, forging the next-gen- a partner and managing director in BCG’s Tokyo office. eration operating model, and developing end-to-end You may contact him by e-mail at iwagami. transparency and a high-performance organization. Duncan Martin is a partner and man- aging director in the firm’s London office. You may con-About the Authors tact him by e-mail at MatthewJürgen E. Schwarz is a senior partner and managing Rogozinski is a partner and managing director in BCG’sdirector in the Toronto office of The Boston Consulting Melbourne office. You may contact him by e-mail atGroup and the leader of the global Wholesale Banking Achim Schwetlick is asegment. You may contact him by e-mail at schwarz. partner and managing director in the firm’s New York Martin Buchar is a partner and man- fice. You may contact him by e-mail at schwetlick.achim@aging director in the firm’s Prague office. You may contact Tjun Tang is a partner and managing directorhim by e-mail at Gennaro Ca- in BCG’s Hong Kong office. You may contact him by e-sale is a partner and managing director in BCG’s Milan mail at You may contact him by e-mail at Oliver Dany is a partner and managing directorin the firm’s Frankfurt office. You may contact him by e-mail at Keith Halliday is the man-C  O 
  10. 10. Megatrends Shaping the Corporate Banking LandscapeR egardless of one’s views on what will hap- sumers, and government resistance to offshoring will rein pen next as the global financial crisis it in. evolves, it is clear that corporate banking executives face an altered landscape. Only In our view, however, although market dynamics such as one thing is beyond doubt: amid a rapidly those leading up to 2007 may never return, we are stillchanging global economy, corporate banks must adapt likely to see the emergence of “globalization 2.0.” For ex-and forge insightful, long-term strategies if they hope to ample, BCG forecasts that the share of global GDP gener-gain competitive advantage. ated in the Asia-Pacific region will rise to almost 40 per- cent by 2020, from around 30 percent in 2010. Roughly asSpecifically, corporate banks must react to sweeping much foreign direct investment is now flowing fromtrends that are affecting how companies do business all emerging markets into mature ones as in the other direc-over the world. For example, many erstwhile emerging tion—upending a multiyear trend. The number of com-economies have moved into the mainstream. More and panies from Brazil, Russia, India, and China (the BRICmore companies—not just large multinationals—are in- countries) in the Fortune 500 has more than doubled,creasingly integrated into domestic and global supply from 27 companies in 2005 to 58 in 2009. In terms of mar-chains and are looking to their banks for “financial sup- ket capitalization, four of the top ten banks in the worldply chain” solutions to assist them. Technological advanc- are now based in Asia-Pacific.1es continue at a rapid pace. The effects of globalization 2.0 on corporate banks willCorporate banks must also fully grasp the trends that will be significant. On the client side, more and more compa-weigh heaviest on their industry. The most powerful forc- nies will be internationally active. Even relatively smalles (or “megatrends”) are the continuing process of global- companies will participate, oen as part of intricate, far-ization, the shiing economic and industry structures of reaching supply chains. Growing enterprises such as thosethe new economy, and technological progress. In addition based in the BRIC countries will need a full range ofto these interconnected forces, banks must grapple with banking services as they sell automobiles, computers, andthe harsh fallout from the crisis and with the evolving, myriad other goods in the United States, Europe, andstricter regulatory environment. All of these dynamics elsewhere. The potential revenues to be gained fromwill determine how corporate banks navigate the next de- these trends will be sizable, but capturing them will re-cade. quire a nimble and creative approach. For example, ex- actly what kind of innovative financial-supply-chain ser- vices are needed? And how might the sales forces ofGlobalization 2.0 domestic European or U.S. banks capture the business of BRIC multinationals expanding abroad?Some pundits claim that the crisis will curtail globaliza-tion. They argue that factors such as protectionist policies 1. See After the Storm: Creating Value in Banking 2010, BCG report,in countries with high unemployment, impoverished con- February 2010. T B C G
  11. 11. Globalization 2.0 will also affect the competitive land- Increasing Competitive Intensity. The Internationalscape in corporate banking. For example, some new com- Monetary Fund’s (IMF’s) April 2010 World Economic Out-petitors may potentially emerge from the BRIC countries look report predicts economic growth in the euro zoneto replicate in banking what aggressive companies such and Japan of just 1 to 2 percent through 2015, with thatas Haier, ArcelorMittal, and Embraer have achieved in in- of the United States being marginally higher at 2.4 to 3.1dustries as diverse as appliances, steel, and aircra manu- percent. Amid such relatively modest economic expan-facturing. As BRIC banks follow their clients into estab- sion, the race for clients, market share, and profits will belished markets, their rivalries with both more frenzied than ever. The chief impli-local and global-titan banks will unques- cation for corporate banks is that clientstionably heat up. No large corporate will be increasingly sensitive about mar- bank will be immune gins and fees. Weaker competitors willOn the operational side, banks will face in- start to compete on prices, and clients will to the effects ofcreasing choices about how to internation- pressure incumbent banks to lower theirs,alize their back offices, which they must globalization. forcing these banks to become more effi-do in order to capture scale and seamless- cient. But clients will also be more open toly serve multicountry clients. For example, banking solutions (such as industry-spe-they can create “international product factories” that cialized payment solutions) that help them cut costs andserve clients in multiple countries. They can also emulate compete more effectively.many retail banks and pursue more offshoring and out-sourcing solutions, although political and regulatory con- Industry-Specific Banking Needs. Some industries aresiderations may block this path to some degree. sweet spots for corporate banks because of their relative- ly rapid growth rates and specific product needs. Such dy-Ultimately, no large corporate bank will be immune to namics are oen present in industries experiencing athe effects of ongoing globalization. And growth-oriented long-term shi from manufacturing to services, and thusbanks will be tempted by the rapidly developing econo- from credit-heavy banking relationships to a greater mixmies. BCG estimates that over 40 percent of total global of transactions and deposits. Take health care as an ex-revenue growth in corporate banking between 2009 and ample. BCG’s research indicates that in the United States,2019 will come from the BRIC nations. health care companies earning revenues from $10 million to $500 million grew at 17 percent annually from 2002Still, banks must tread carefully if they wish to capitalize through 2007. This was a much faster rate than that ofon this opportunity. Corporate banking is in many ways most other industries, and these companies generated aa local business with significant barriers to entry, espe- more attractive mix of corporate banking revenues thancially in the small- and mid-cap segments. There are nu- the average client. Yet our 2009 benchmarking data showmerous examples of banks whose forays into internation- that some banks have been much more successful thanal markets have ended in costly failure. These episodes, their peers at penetrating these growth addition to regulatory pressure and capital scarcity,may result in fewer banks embarking on foreign growth Ongoing Consolidation. Continuing globalization and in-sprees. Rather than pursue credit-led expansion and take creasing competitive intensity will continue to spur con-on local players with superior local knowledge, some in- solidation in many industries. Corporate banks that wantstitutions may find that focusing on their existing client to serve top companies as well as up-and-coming midmar-bases is a clearer, less risky path to growth. ket ones will need investment banking capabilities. In ad- dition, cross-border consolidation should increase the number of clients that look to their banks for multicoun-The New Economy try solutions across payments and trade finance.The coming years will be highly challenging for compa- Closer Supply-Chain Integration. The trend we havenies in virtually all industrial sectors—as well as for the seen in recent years toward deeper integration along sup-banks that serve them. Five key trends will exert the ply chains will continue, although it will undoubtedly begreatest impact. affected by other global trends, such as rising energy costsC  O 
  12. 12. (which will increase transportation costs). As companies However, in this age of ubiquitous connectivity, expand-integrate with their business partners more closely (both ing bandwidth, and massive computing power, corporatedomestically and across borders), they will be looking for banking clients themselves continue to invest in betterparallel financial-supply-chain services from their banks. financial systems. Companies of every size are trying to connect more seamlessly with their banks, whetherThe Search for Top Talent. BCG’s case work with corpo- through more sophisticated online data-transfer functionsrate banking clients around the world has consistently for small and midsize clients or through deeper integra-identified talent management as a growing tion with large corporate enterprise-re-area of concern. Competition for top tal- source-planning systems. This growing cli-ent—such as senior relationship managers Companies of all sizes ent need will have important implications(RMs), bad-loan workout specialists, and are trying to connect for banks trying to increase share in trans-investment bankers who are experienced action banking. Indeed, customers are more seamlessly within priority emerging markets—is hotter looking for a variety of benefits: betterthan ever. Banks will also need managers their banks. ease of use (to reduce the amount of inter-with skills in such areas as leveraging new nal training that they need to provide),IT capabilities and optimizing end-to-end greater breadth in the products and servic-loan processes. As banks reenter a growth mode and the es they can access through self-service portals, better in-baby-boom generation begins to retire, finding the talent tegration and customization, and improved two-way com-needed to navigate a large corporate bank through the munication.evolving megatrends will be more challenging than ever.Corporate banks must meet this challenge by forging a Moreover, banks that can build deep, rich, real-time dataclear strategy for talent acquisition, management, and re- and analytics capabilities will be able to develop a holis-tention. tic view of each client relationship—including product utilization patterns and risk, liquidity, and capital factors. Such banks will be able to significantly improve productAdvancing Technology targeting, pricing, and risk management. They will also improve client targeting through techniques such as cli-Despite continuing advances in technology, very few cor- ent clustering.porate banks have the platforms in place to ensure lead-ing functionality and connectivity for clients, as well as Banks will continue to build more electronic platformsefficient and effective sales-to-service processes. These that automate core processes involving account opening,shortcomings result from a variety of factors, including lending, and transaction banking on an end-to-end basisinvestment limits and the low priority of the corporate from the customer to the back office. Automation and al-banking unit compared with the bank’s (usually larger) gorithms that catch and correct data-entry errors will re-retail business unit. sult in higher rates of straight-through processing, greater client satisfaction, and lower costs. In areas where humanIndeed, while many retail institutions have powerful cus- processing is still required, advances in data storage andtomer-information platforms, numerous corporate banks imaging technology will allow greater use of centralizedstill have disjointed management-information systems in and offshored processing centers, as well as skills-basedwhich applications for core businesses such as cash man- routing techniques.agement and trade finance exist on different platforms—and contain different client information that is difficult to In addition, advances in automated decision intelligencecompare. At some corporate banks, extensive manual will allow more sophisticated treatment of loan applica-processes are required to extract data from more than 20 tions and fraud detection, as well as improve ongoing cli-different systems to create a “full wallet” view of any in- ent monitoring and collections. Banks will, of course,dividual client. Moreover, complex legacy sales tools hin- need to remember that reliance on models and automat-der sales force productivity. Lending processes remain pa- ed tools can be dangerous if it replaces human judgmentper intensive. The result can be a long, error-prone in critical areas. But advanced intelligence engines holdexperience for clients. promise both as cost savers in simple decisions such as T B C G
  13. 13. micro and small-business loans and as electronic aids to At numerous banks, these achievements have been moreprioritization that can help staff focus on the right client than enough to offset rising corporate loan losses, at leastfiles and risk decisions. at this point in the credit cycle. Loan volumes and mar- gins spiked early in the crisis, although they started to fade somewhat in the first quarter of this year in manyFallout from the Crisis countries. Transaction payment volumes plummeted and, given extremely low short-term interest rates, so did de-The financial crisis has had a devastating effect on many posit margins. Yet investment banking, risk management,banks overall. But its impact on corporate banking busi- and other fee revenues have been buoyant, if volatile, inness units has been more nuanced. There have been win- many areas. Despite higher loan losses overall and con-ners and losers. tinued cost pressure, the net result that we see for top performers is a surge in economic profit. About one-thirdIn fact, many of the participating business units in BCG’s of corporate banks improved their economic profit fromGlobal Corporate-Banking Benchmarking Database the end of 2007 to the end of 2009.2 (See Exhibit 1.)managed to improve their economic profit in the courseof the crisis. Even as sister business units wrote down For the broader group of our survey participants, howev-mortgage-backed securities or suffered severe consumer- er—comprising “typical” corporate banks—the crisis haslending losses, many corporate banks successfully re-priced corporate loans, attracted new loan and deposit 2. This refers to benchmarking participants based in developedvolume, and increased investment-banking and risk-man- markets. In emerging markets, a higher proportion of benchmark-agement sales. ing participants showed improving economic profit. Exhibit 1. About One-Third of Corporate Banks Improved Their Economic Profit from the End of 2007 Through 2009 Economic profit growth of European, North American, and Australian corporate banks during the financial crisis Growing Negative but improving Positive and growing % of % of participants participants 51 50 50 34% of banks have improving 23 economic profit 25 25 10 11 0 0 2005–2007 2008–2009 2005–2007 2008–2009 Economic profit trend Negative and shrinking Positive but shrinking % of % of participants participants 50 50 50 35 25 17 25 4 0 0 2005–2007 2008–2009 2005–2007 2008–2009 Shrinking Negative Positive Economic profit starting point Source: BCG Global Corporate-Banking Benchmarking Database. Note: Economic profit calculated based on regulatory capital of 8 percent of Basel II RWA, using a long-run pretax capital hurdle rate of 12 percent.C  O 
  14. 14. brought a difficult operating environment. Assuming a and then by large-cap business units. Let’s take a closerrough long-term pretax capital hurdle rate of 12 percent, look at the segments.their economic profit is still well below 2007 levels. None-theless, it rebounded in 2009 from the lows of 2008. (See The Micro Segment (Serving Clients with Less ThanExhibit 2.) Going forward, of course, scarcer capital and $2 Million in Annual Sales Revenue). It is clear that mi-changes to capital regulations will likely drive rises in hur- cro segments can generate very high profitability. This isdle rates, which will negatively affect economic profit. oen driven by “transaction champion” strategies in which more than 70 percent of revenues come from trans-In terms of segment performance, in 2009, corporate action fees and deposit products. (See Exhibit 3.) Com-banking business units serving the micro segment had by bined with scale economies from leveraging the retailfar the highest average return on regulatory capital, fol- bank’s branches and back office, this dynamic enableslowed by small- and mid-cap (at roughly the same level) most small-business segments to ride out even sharp rises Exhibit 2. The Typical Corporate Bank Saw Economic Profit Rebound in 2009 Evolution of key drivers based on weighted averages for all participants, 2007–2009 (indexed to 2007) Loan margin 100 98 114 2007 2008 2009 Economic profit Pretax operating profit Revenue Loan volume is a 122 is a 100 121 120 100 79 100 99 102 100 113 73 function minus function of of 2007 2008 2009 2007 2008 2009 2007 2008 2009 2007 2008 2009 Regulatory capital 1 Cost Transaction and deposit margin 100 123 122 100 111 110 100 99 82 2007 2008 2009 2007 2008 2009 2007 2008 2009 Pretax capital hurdle Actual loan losses Deposit volume rate (%)2 472 274 100 100 109 122 12 12 12 2007 2008 2009 2007 2008 2009 2007 2008 2009 Other fee revenues 100 104 123 2007 2008 2009 Source: BCG Global Corporate-Banking Benchmarking Database. Note: This analysis excludes a small number of participants with severe loan-loss crises (i.e., loan losses greater than 80 percent of their 2009 revenue). 1 Defined as 8 percent of Basel II RWA. 2 Assumed long-run pretax capital hurdle rate of 12 percent used for all years. T B C G
  15. 15. Exhibit 3. High Deposit and Transaction Revenues Have Lifted the Micro Segment All-participant average, 2009 (basis points per RWA unless otherwise noted) Pretax return on Revenue Loan revenue regulatory capital (%) 1,500 600 40 is a function 1,000 plus 400 20 of 500 200 0 0 0 Deposit and Cost-to-income ratio (%) transaction revenue 80 800 60 600 40 400 20 200 0 0 Investment banking Actual loan losses risk-management revenue 400 200 200 100 0 0 1 Regulatory capital Other revenue 1,000 750 400 Micro Mid-cap 500 200 250 Small-cap Large-cap 0 0 Source: BCG Global Corporate-Banking Benchmarking Database. 1 Defined as 8 percent of Basel II loan losses, which are quite common when recessions reducing unproductive sales resources were all themeshit small business. However, some segments in hard-hit in 2009.countries have seen losses that exceed 1,000 basis points,driving them into the red. The Mid-Cap Segment (Serving Clients with More Than $25 Million to $250 Million in Annual Sales Rev-The Small-Cap Segment (Serving Clients with $2 Mil- enue). Mid-cap business units can get caught in betweenlion to $25 Million in Annual Sales Revenue). The tale the inherent profitability of the small-cap transaction-is similar in the small-cap space, where transaction cham- dominant business and the fee-rich large-cap space. Theypion models have proven highly resilient during the crisis. have had less generous pricing and smaller deposit vol-It is especially critical to manage small-cap costs and pro- umes (compared with loans) than small-cap units. At theductivity in a disciplined way in both the RM organiza- same time, they have seen smaller margin increases thantion and the back office. Cost cutting has been a priority large-cap units, while suffering higher loan losses andin the small-cap segment, with many of our survey par- lower revenues from investment banking and risk man-ticipants reporting cost reductions in absolute terms de- agement products. Mid-cap business units also face thespite growing revenues. Redirecting small-business clients challenge of clients demanding relatively large loansinto branch channels, streamlining credit processes, and when the data and analytics on these companies canC  O 
  16. 16. sometimes be sparse. So while mid-cap units have enjoyed Large-cap bankers have also succeeded in increasing salesmargin and volume improvements overall, it has been of investment banking and risk management products,quite difficult to create value in this segment during the with half of our participants increasing revenues in thesecrisis. areas by more than 20 percent annually from 2007 through 2009.The Large-Cap Segment (Serving Clients with MoreThan $250 Million in Annual Sales Revenue). The Differences Within Segments. Despite these generallarge-cap segment has been the toughest environment trends, it is worth noting that within each segment thereoverall in which to create value. However, the perfor- were wide differences in performance among individualmance gap between typical large- and mid-cap units has banks in 2009. (See Exhibit 4.) These differences werenarrowed during the crisis. This is due to a relatively large more pronounced than in previous surveys because theincrease in credit margins in the large-cap segment. A key crisis has more sharply divided top from bottom perform-factor is the fact that these lenders in many cases had ex- ers. Moreover, these variations were not the result of dif-tremely low lending margins before the crisis. Some ex- ferent economic conditions in different countries. Weecutives we interviewed even described these thin mar- found multiple cases of business units in the same seg-gins as “irrational.” ment and country with return on regulatory capital dif- ferences exceeding 20 percentage points.In our 2007 survey, multiple business units had total cred-it revenue per risk-weighted asset (RWA) well below 100 Regional Views. Important variations also emergedbasis points, a level inconsistent with value creation on a among regions. In Western Europe, for example, revenuestandalone basis. In this year’s survey, many large-cap growth partly cushioned the blow of rising loan losses, atparticipants reported margin increases since 2007 of this least for some banks. By contrast, our discussions withamount or even more, effectively doubling their lending corporate banking executives revealed widespread wor-margins. ries about macroeconomic stability and a possible dou- Exhibit 4. There Were Wide Variations in Performance Within Segments in 2009 Return on regulatory capital for top-, average-, and bottom-performing business units by segment, 2009 Average pretax return on regulatory capital (%)1 120 115 100 80 60 44 41 40 –25 33 20 –8 –6 0 0 –7 –20 –17 –15 –24 –40 Bottom three Top three Bottom three Top three Bottom three Top three Bottom three Top three Micro Small-cap Mid-cap Large-cap Average 2007 Average 2009 Source: BCG Global Corporate-Banking Benchmarking Database. 1 Defined as 8 percent of Basel II RWA. T B C G
  17. 17. ble-dip recession. Some banks in Western Europe suf- The Asia-Pacific region, in general, was relatively shel-fered particularly severe loan losses from excessive tered from the crisis despite the exposure of many com-exposure to sectors like real estate or shipping, or too panies (and their banks) to trade with Europe and themuch concentration in hard-hit markets like Spain. United States. IMF data suggest that overall economic growth in the region—excluding Japan, Taiwan, Singa-In Central and Eastern Europe, banks also saw revenue pore, Hong Kong, and South Korea—did not dip below 6growth of 15 percent or more, on average. Yet severe loan percent from 2007 through 2009.losses had a crippling effect on many busi-ness units, jumping by more than 250 ba- Observers continue to monitor issues re-sis points of RWA at multiple players from Many corporate banks lating to macroeconomic stability in some2007 through 2009. have not properly countries in the region, and specific sec- tors (especially export-dependent compa- factored risk into theirIn the United States, the speed and sever- nies) may pose loan-loss challenges toity of loan losses, especially in commercial pricing. banks. But the growth outlook in Asia- Pa-real estate, were a surprise to many. Some cific remains relatively optimistic. Our in-banks suffered losses in 2009 that wiped terviews with executives at both local andout their pretax profits of the previous several years or international banks in the region confirm that many in-more. We also found that U.S. banks with highly sophisti- stitutions are once again looking for growth.cated product offerings across cash management and oth-er fee-based products weathered the storm better, whilesmaller banks that were more dependent on both lend- The Lessons of the Crisising and deposit-spread revenue suffered. How successfulthese stronger banks will be at picking up strategic rela- Aer reviewing the experiences of top performers duringtionships from damaged rivals will be a key issue going the crisis and speaking with senior corporate-banking ex-forward. ecutives, BCG has identified a number of axioms that banks would do well to remember.Meanwhile, Canadian banks and their Australian coun-terparts came through the crisis in excellent condition. The first is to always keep risk at the top of the agenda. Cor-Some posted margin increases of over 100 basis points, porate banks should fully factor risk, as well as liquiditywith loan losses staying below 25 basis points. Their suc- and capital management, into their long-term strategies,cess was partly due to relatively strong national econo- operational planning, and day-to-day management. Thismies, but other factors—such as a sustained focus on the fundamental rule was neglected by many of the lowest-core commercial-banking business (instead of driving for performing corporate banks.growth in riskier sectors) and conservative risk-manage-ment practices—suggest that choices by senior manage- Indeed, too many bankers focused on revenue andment also played a major role. market share—not factoring in the “real” costs of risk, liquidity, and capital—when making lending and pricingIn Latin America—particularly in the region’s leading decisions. Our 2008 corporate-banking report noted thatmarket, Brazil—the outlook for corporate banking is from 2005 through 2007, at what turned out to be thequite favorable. Aer facing sizable loan losses and re- peak of a very positive run of economic growth, onlyduced liquidity, Brazilian corporate banks are aggressive- about half of corporate banks were generating positively returning to loan growth. Most key players are focusing (and rising ) economic profit. The economic climate hidtheir efforts on the mid-cap segment. Capital markets the fact that the revenue growth of many banks was theshould develop in line with Brazil’s generally favorable result of more loans to relatively risky clients. Seen todaymacroeconomic outlook, offering investment banking op- through a prism of realistic liquidity premiums, risk costs,portunities. Transaction banking will continue to play an and capital charges, it is clear that many of these deals de-extremely important role, leveraging the sophistication stroyed value. Generally speaking, many corporate banksand innovative electronic capabilities of the Brazilian have not properly factored risk into their pricing. (See Ex-payments system. hibit 5.)C  O 
  18. 18. A second lesson is that corporate banks should manage entrenched local banks that have superior market knowl-their businesses like a portfolio, with an “over the cycle” edge and a less urgent need to quickly acquire clients topoint of view. Businesses such as commercial real estate cover the costs of a newly expanded sales force. This is aand equipment finance can be profitable, but banks must lesson that banks must keep in mind as they considerbe disciplined enough to monitor the growth of such busi- how to take advantage of the rapid growth in corporatenesses, especially during “good” years. It is also critical banking in rapidly developing economies.not to let one or two sectors that appear to be highly lu-crative grow too large in the portfolio. A collapse in these Finally, and most important in the long run, corporateareas can create painful loan losses as well as eliminate banks must cultivate deep client relationships. A salienta significant portion of the bank’s overall revenue point, one that some institutions have had to learn thestream. hard way during the crisis, is that reputational risk is real. For example, selling clients inappropriate financial instru-International or “out of footprint” expansion provides an- ments can result not only in costly litigation but also inother lesson: corporate banks must be extra cautious outside long-term damage to a bank’s franchise. Somewhat lesstheir home markets. It has always been extremely difficult severe damage can result from cutting credit lines withto leverage a successful business model in one country long-standing clients or dramatically raising margins.into a new environment. Credit-led expansion, in particu-lar, can be dangerous, especially if competitors have ei- Our research with corporate banking clients indicatesther superior knowledge of client risks or better capabili- that many are reviewing their banking relationships,ties in valuing and managing collateral. It is all too easy seeking to “diversify their portfolio” with multiple banks.for a new entrant to end up with the clients rejected by Clients are also more conscious of the need to choose Exhibit 5. Many Corporate Banks Have Not Properly Factored Risk into Their Pricing Comparable mid-caps: relative credit-revenue performance, 2007, versus loan-loss deterioration, 2007–2009 Change in actual losses per RWA, 2007–2009 (basis points) –100 –80 –60 –40 –20 0 20 40 60 80 100 120 0 –20 –40 Banks with the lowest pricing have faced the biggest deterioration in –60 loan losses –80 –100 –120 Average –140 Total credit revenue per loan volume relative to average, 2007 (basis points) Source: BCG Corporate-Banking Benchmarking Database. T B C G
  19. 19. banks with strong balance sheets and reputations in or- will also be affected by rule changes related to counter-der to avoid becoming collateral damage in a bank’s next party risk). Loan classes with sporadic heavy losses, suchliquidity crunch. Of course, corporate banking clients are as those to large corporations, may also be severely af-also more aware of the liquidity and risk challenges that fected.banks face. Many understand that banks extending cred-it need to cross-sell to be viable, and that the low lending Higher capitalization requirements will result in scarcerrates of 2006 are not likely to return. Whether this new and therefore more expensive capital. Not only will cor-understanding withstands a return to more porate banks have to compete with sisternormal economic-growth conditions, or cli- business units for capital, but higher hur-ents and their banks return to the heady The regulatory dle rates at many banks will mean thatprecrisis mindset of low margins and high response to the crisis corporate units will have to work harderrisk tolerances, remains to be seen. to generate economic profit from their remains a work in client bases. progress.The New-Normal Regulatory Leverage requirements, depending onEnvironment how they are structured, will have an im- pact on high-leverage businesses such as real estate andThe regulatory response to the crisis remains a work in government finance, as well as on contingent liabilitiesprogress. But it is virtually certain that a climate of great- and undrawn credit lines. The impact on products sucher conservatism and risk avoidance will prevail and that as asset-based lending and small-business loans guaran-new regulations will have a material impact on the cor- teed by governments, where regulations may not fullyporate banking industry. Reporting requirements will be- recognize the low-risk nature of the lending, will alsocome increasingly onerous—placing another burden on have to be carefully and risk analysts serving the corporate bankingbusiness unit, as well as on frontline sales staff. Rules on liquidity risk will make transaction banking and its pools of deposits attractive, although details on theThe regulatory agenda covers a vast array of highly com- treatment of “sticky” core corporate deposits will have anplex and interrelated issues. They range, for example, effect on internal transfer pricing and therefore on trans-from Basel III topics such as redesigned rules on RWA action banking economics.methodology, capital adequacy, leverage ratios, and li-quidity risk, to areas such as “financial crisis responsibil- Finally, new central counterparty rules may have an im-ity fees,” inappropriate incentives, and central counter- pact on sales of derivatives to mid- and large-cap businessparty requirements for derivatives. units. Capital requirements for standard products should decline, but corporate banks will also face greater pricingIt will be critical for corporate banking executives to mon- transparency and potential disintermediation from elec-itor developments and ensure that their banks retain the tronic platforms. Customized products—which will likelyflexibility to respond to regulatory changes as they be- face significantly higher capital requirements—will be-come finalized. In the coming months, bankers will need come much more costly to think two moves ahead to be ready for possible actionsby regulators. Overall, upcoming regulatory changes are sure to increase the cost of providing financial services to corporate cli-More specifically, there are four interconnected factors ents. It remains to be seen which banks will be most suc-whose regulation will significantly affect corporate bank- cessful at passing these extra costs on to their clients. Do-ing: risk measurement (including RWA), capitalization, le- ing so will require rigorous data and analytics toverage ratio, and liquidity risk. The impact of changes in incorporate true risk, liquidity, and capital costs into prod-these areas will vary by product and segment. uct pricing. It will also require strong sales and communi- cations skills with clients, and discipline in competingNew RWA definitions will hit RWA-intensive products with banks that continue to price below their true costhard, including client-driven trading businesses (which levels.C  O 
  20. 20. The Blue-Chip Corporate Bank How Top Institutions Are Positioning Themselves to WinS trong economic growth and low loan losses al- Building Premium Client Relationships lowed many corporate banks to post strong profits in the years leading up to the crisis. But Banks that outperformed both before and during the cri- the gap between top and bottom performers sis tend to share three characteristics in their distribution from 2007 through 2009 was extremely wide. models.Given the megatrends in play and the new-normal eco-nomic and regulatory environments, we expect this gap First, their overall philosophy is driven by the develop-not to narrow but to increase in the coming years. BCG’s ment of deep client relationships as opposed to a focusbenchmarking data show that the gap between top and on sales at any cost. Their sales capabilities are still verybottom performers is so large that even a period of lower high, but they place a premium on understanding the cli-loan losses and recovering economic growth would not ent and the client’s industry and providing superior ser-allow low-performing banks to come close to the top per- vice, expert advice, and solutions that help the client suc-formers in terms of overall profitability. ceed. At a limited number of banks, we are seeing top performers put a much greater emphasis on the corpo-Indeed, in our view, the postcrisis era will witness the rate “client experience”—defining what the target clientemergence of the blue-chip corporate bank. Such banks experience is, training their RMs and client service teamswill be the jewels in the portfolios of leading universal fi- on how to deliver it, and tracking client perceptions ofnancial institutions. They will generate steady long-term how RMs and client service teams are succeeding.profit growth thanks to superior business models, excel-lent risk-management capabilities, and an overall ap- Blue-chip banks also possess the analytics capability toproach that focuses on building a value-creating corpo- identify those client clusters with the highest long-termrate-banking franchise. By this we mean a balanced profit potential. Such banks have the richest mix of sta-business that focuses on deep and profitable client rela- ble, fee-based cash-management services, enabling thetionships rather than growth in burgeoning (but risky) credit needed for the relationship to be provided on aproducts or sectors. Blue-chip banks will show greater dis- sustainable, risk-adjusted basis. Analytical insights cancipline in responding to economic recovery, while their be used both by senior managers for strategic planningbottom-quartile competitors may well return to aggres- and by individual RMs or client service teams to bettersive deal making. Already in the first quarter of 2010 we understand their clients’ needs and revenue potential.saw falling lending margins as well as easier and longerloan terms in some markets, trends that are reminiscent Finally, blue-chip banks have rigorous relationship-man-of 2006 and the circumstances that preceded the crisis. agement, sales, and service processes. These feature struc- tured and standardized client-planning methods, strongIn the course of our case work and benchmarking efforts, teaming with product specialists, intense performance re-we have identified five core priorities of the blue-chip cor- views and coaching, and transparent data about salesporate bank that leading institutions are already embrac- pipelines and client service team performance. A few toping for the postcrisis era. Let’s examine each one. banks have also implemented structured client feedback T B C G
  21. 21. to ensure that RMs and client service teams are not just rapidly growing markets constituted proof that their risk-selling to clients but also bringing them the full relation- management practices were adequate. There was oen aship value of the bank. The result of this approach is a su- misplaced confidence that the boom would continue in-perior client experience that generates loyalty—which, in definitely, as well as a glaring lack of expertise concerningturn, translates into deep wallet penetration of the most corporate-lending risk assessment, liquidity pricing, theattractive clients in each segment. transfer of funding costs, and monitoring mechanisms needed to identify failing loans early.Creating a Culture of Risk Blue-chip players create a culture of riskAwareness and Accountability The risk function awareness and accountability at every lev- needs to get el. The first line of defense lies with theAs the financial crisis has evolved, atten- front office—as opposed to having the out of itstion has shied from banks’ initial losses front office push on the accelerator whenin subprime and related securities to more ghetto. the risk department tries to step on thetraditional asset classes, including corpo- brakes. The overall risk-management func-rate loans, commercial real estate, and tion regarding standards, infrastructure,specialty finance activities that bolstered revenue growth and methodologies is centralized, but every individual induring the boom years. Many banks in Europe and the every department is held responsible for any activity thatUnited States, for example, focused on fast-growing com- involves risk.mercial-real-estate markets instead of “bread and butter”corporate-client relationships, sometimes ending up with In our conversations with blue-chip banking executives,greater exposure to commercial real estate than to all of one of the most common words used was discipline. Thesetheir core clients combined. banks are prepared to lose market share rather than slash margins or end up with an unbalanced portfolio of assetsDuring the crisis, some banks’ transformation from as- and businesses. Before the crisis, executives at more thansumed profitability to a state of extreme distress was rap- one high-performing bank told us about deals they hadid and stunning. Moreover, banks that were already show- le to more aggressive international banks or commercialing high exposure to bad loans tended to get hit the financing companies because they thought the risk-ad-hardest. Even worse, the banks with the riskiest portfolios justed pricing was too low. Now, having navigated the cri-did not end up being compensated for that risk by suffi- sis with strong financial performance, these blue-chipcient additional revenue. banks are using their balance sheets to grow—maintain- ing their discipline—while less careful banks retrench.The revelation to the market—and to the banking indus-try itself, to some degree—was that precious few financial Overall, to build a strong risk culture, there are five basicinstitutions had a true awareness of the need for rigorous measures that corporate banks can take.risk management. In fact, practices that oen paid offhandsomely in the short term—such as pushing large Maintain the strong independence of risk controlloans to large corporate clients, concentrating on con- functions. The risk function needs to get out of its ghet-struction and other real-estate loans, and competing on to. What’s needed is a culture of true risk management—loan margins—fostered a culture of daring in which those not just risk reporting and upward delegation. Risk man-who threw caution to the wind were seen as great sales agers must be properly compensated and recognized andpeople rather than as reckless. 3 their independence from the front office guaranteed. They must also be encouraged to be proactive. As oneMoreover, chief risk officers at many banks did not have risk specialist observed, “Risk functions need to go look-sufficient levers to influence credit allocation and pricing ing for trouble rather than waiting for trouble to finddecisions. Compensation schemes were too closely linked them.”to top-line performance only, with no adjustments forrisk, liquidity, capital, and operating costs. Many banks 3. See Risk and Reward: What Banks Should Do About Evolving Finan-mistakenly believed that their strong performance amid cial Regulations, BCG White Paper, March 2010.C  O 
  22. 22. Ensure senior-management competence in risk man- kets—and high profitability over the economic cycle. Pre-agement. Those banks that have best weathered the cur- vious BCG corporate-banking reports have documentedrent crisis typically possess a wealth of accumulated ex- the tendency of transaction champion models to outper-perience in risk management across sales, product form. This finding has held true during the crisis. (See Ex-development, and general management functions. They hibit 6). Moreover, our benchmarking revealed stark dif-also tend to set aside time for thoughtful consideration of ferences among competitors in areas such as depositrisk trends and scenarios, with a premium placed on busi- volume generation, revenue generation, and client pene-ness judgment rather than having the risk tration of transaction banking products.analysts slice and dice the risk data into (See Exhibit 7.)lengthy and complex reports that go un- Even deals withread. prestige clients To win at transaction banking in the post- crisis era, institutions will certainly need must be openlyAdopt incentives that take risk manage- solid product capabilities—but even morement performance into account. The scrutinized. important is a true sales and service men-key issue is not bonus levels alone but the tality. They will also need effective deliv-need to explicitly link bonuses to risk-ad- ery and operating models.justed performance over a sufficient period of time. Somebanks rewarded RMs purely on the basis of loan volumes Blue-chip corporate banks will improve their capabilitiesand revenues rather than long-term economic profit. by moving beyond traditional product-centric cultures to more solution-oriented ones. A prime element of thisEncourage healthy debate. Deals, especially the most transition is the gradual building of financial-supply-complex ones, must be discussed in depth. Even deals chain offerings that provide an integrated set of serviceswith prestige clients brought in by top-performing ranging from new products (such as e-invoicing) and val-RMs must be openly scrutinized. The role of risk com- ue adds (such as working-capital optimization and li-mittees in fostering such discussions is essential, as is the quidity management) to traditional payment services.role of senior risk specialists. The latter are critical to Products will span the supply chain, serving both sidesproductive thought partnering with sales and other ex- of the transaction—as illustrated by financing based onecutives. Banks whose risk analysts are junior staff lim- the buyer’s credit rating that actually finances the buy-ited to generating reports not only are missing a signifi- er’s supplier.cant opportunity but are putting the organization atundue risk. Moreover, leading corporate banks will strengthen their online-access capabilities. Larger clients will increasinglyImprove risk data and analytics. Banks must invest to access their bank’s services through their own enterprise-improve their data gathering, reporting, and analytics on resource-planning systems, allowing for far greater func-their clients. Outside observers are oen startled to learn tionality and the deepening of relationships at the samethat some well-known corporate banks struggle to com- time. Smaller companies will use e-portals that offerpile holistic relationship risk data on major clients, to banking clients quick and easy access to a broad array ofmatch risk department data with finance department products and services, free up human resources for moredata on loans, or to quickly identify deteriorating loans value-added activities, reduce errors, and improve the cli-for handling by their special loans groups. ent experience. E-portals not only migrate transaction volume from cost-Enhancing Transaction Banking ly branch and call-center channels but also enable whatCapabilities we call customer-initiated cross-selling. A client using an e- portal finds it easy to access added functionality—for ex-The crisis has highlighted the attractiveness of transaction ample, to lock in a forward exchange rate or sign up for abanking. It is a business that can provide reliable (and cash-flow forecasting service. And as clients become moregrowing) fee and spread revenues, rich deposit volumes— dependent on their banks’ online products and services,critical to reducing reliance on wholesale funding mar- they will find it much more onerous to change their bank- T B C G
  23. 23. Exhibit 6. Transaction Champions Tend to Outperform, Even in a Climate of Depressed Deposit-Interest Margins Mid-cap revenue mix, 2009 % 2 2 100 Transaction volumes down 8 14 in 2009 versus 2007 3 80 Deposit margins down 33 60 87 40 Loan interest margins up but loan losses also up 51 20 0 Transaction champions Credit-heavy traditionalists Revenue per RWA (basis points) 605 249 Return on regulatory capital (%)1 31 8 Crisis impact since 2007 ROE up for most ROE down for all Investment banking, risk management, and asset management products Transaction fees Deposit interest income Loan interest and fees Source: BCG Global Corporate-Banking Benchmarking Database. 1 Based on the worst three-year average of actual or expected loan losses. Exhibit 7. In Transaction Banking, There Are Major Performance Gaps Between Competitors Mid-cap peer group: key transaction-banking performance drivers Deposit volume generation Revenue generation Client penetration Transaction fees plus deposit Percentage of clients Deposit-to-loan interest income/deposit volume using transaction ratio (%) (basis points) banking services 80 220 100 200 180 80 30 percentage 60 points 160 2.5X (9X fees) 140 60 4X 120 40 100 80 Transaction 40 fees 20 60 40 Deposit 20 interest 20 income 0 0 0 Top three Bottom three Top three Bottom three Top three Bottom three Source: BCG Corporate-Banking Benchmarking Database.C  O 
  24. 24. ing relationship. But building a superior e-portal and cost- teams and strategy discussions, so that there is positiveefficient back-end systems requires significant, continu- feedback between strategy formulation and what is (andous investment. is not) possible on the IT and operations fronts.Finally, to state the obvious, developing a winning A key element of this interaction is oen the articulationtransaction-banking value proposition for clients is not of a shared target operating model, based on a clear andeasy. It requires a long-term commitment to building quantified view of the desired client experience for theproduct platforms, optimizing operational relevant client segment. This experienceprocesses, and embedding the concept of must be linked to the bank’s businessthe balanced product suite in the sales Building a superior strategy—whether it is trying to be, for ex-force. In addition, it is worth stressing that e-portal requires ample, an “easy and convenient” transac-merely developing product capabilities is tion bank for small businesses or a “fast significant, continuingnot enough—the sales force must be fully and flexible lender” for larger clients withengaged and capable of selling the prod- investment. more sophisticated needs.ucts to clients. Banks that focused onthese elements of their business before Specific initiatives may vary by segment,the crisis are now enjoying the dividends, generating the product, and bank, but they generally have commonprofits needed for further investment to make it even themes, such as the following:more difficult for latecomers to attack the market effec-tively. ◊ Reducing redundant tasks and related errors that af- fect the customer experience, particularly in cash man- agement and lending processesForging the Next-GenerationOperating Model ◊ Moving operational work to central contact centers or online platforms to allow the sales force to concentrateNow more than ever, corporate banks need to overcome on selling products and managing relationshipsthe old-fashioned view that theirs is a purely “face toface” business, requiring minimal investment in process ◊ Improving data capture and quality, as well as analyt-and technology. We have seen seriously outdated legacy ics, in order to improve client insightIT systems at some major institutions. In order to win inthe postcrisis era, corporate banks need to be proactive ◊ Simplifying, standardizing, and automating core proc-about remodeling their business processes and IT archi- esses as much as possible (which requires careful con-tecture. sideration of what should be standard and what should be customized when it can add value for clients)The difficulty is that corporate banking back offices areoen small compared with their retail-banking equiva- ◊ Leveraging scale in operational activities and enablinglents and can take longer to recover significant one-time significant cost reductionIT investments, resulting in more challenging project eco-nomics. Consequently, corporate banking divisions some- ◊ Capturing cross-border opportunities in order to buildtimes get short shri when IT and reengineering invest- scale and seek lower factor costs (such as by offshoringments are decided each year. or creating multicountry product factories)Blue-chip corporate banks take a long-term view of the In the course of our client work, we have seen some lead-critical operations and IT enablers that support their suc- ing corporate banks develop product factories where op-cess. They continually implement projects to enhance ef- erations and IT platforms serve customers in multiplefectiveness and efficiency, taking a holistic “end to end” countries. We have also witnessed the evolution of leanperspective on their operating model, from the client credit processes that segment loans according to theirthrough the sales force to the back office. They also in- complexity. This allows applications to be handled morevolve IT and operations specialists in their management efficiently through clean, quick, risk-appropriate decision T B C G