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TOP PHILIPPINE BANK EXECS: The country's banking industry leaders are currently navigating a range of challenges, given the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas's (BSP, the central bank) Digital Payments Transformation Roadmap. One of the objectives of this drive is to convert 50 per cent of total retail transactions in the country to digital channels and boost the percentage of Filipinos with financial accounts to 70 percent by end-2023. The BSP is planning to issue additional digital banking licenses in the country, throwing open the field for greater competition. Simultaneously, the monetary authority is implementing incentives to promote sustainable and green project finance. Meet the top leaders of the Philippines' banking sector and a brief on their journey towards the industry pinnacle (BSP data as of end-2022).
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BDO (Banco de Oro): Nestor Villanueva Tan, 65, is the President and CEO of BDO Unibank, Inc. The bank, the country's biggest, has assets estimated at 3.924 trillion pesos ($65 billion). He has occupied since June 27, 1998. He concurrently holds the chairmanship of the following BDO Unibank subsidiaries: BDO Strategic Holdings, Inc. and BDO Network Bank, Inc. In 2015, Tan won the Best Executive in the Philippines award from Asiamoney. Other citations received include Asia's Best CEO Award from Corporate Governance Asia, CEO Excel Award from the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) and the KPMG Executive Leadership Team of the Year from Asia CEO Awards. He was also voted as the Best CEO for Emerging Markets (Philippines) in a poll conducted by New York-based magazine Institutional Investor.
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LANDBANK: Lynette V. Ortiz is at the helm of Land Bank of the Philippines (LandBank), the official depository of the national government. The bank has assets estimated at 3.14 trillion pesos (about $55 billion). As a state-owned financial institution, a constant challenge is to deliver on its promise of excellence with its offerings and public service, including the disburement of the "4Ps" conditional cash transfer to 4.3 million households in 41,676 barangays (villages) across the country. Ortiz, whose prior role was Chief Executive Officer at Standard Chartered Bank Philippines, emphasised her dedication to bolstering the agricultural sector, advancing financial inclusivity, and providing assistance to marginalized segments of society, aligning with LandBank’s overarching inclusive development agenda.
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BPI: Jose Teodoro K. Limcaoco, 61, was appointed as President and CEO of Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) on April 22, 2021. BPI, the country's oldest bank founded in 1851, has assets valued at 2.61 trillion pesos ($45.9 billion). From 2015 to 2021, he was a Senior Managing Director and the Chief Finance Officer, Chief Risk Officer, and Chief Sustainability Officer and Finance Group Head of Ayala Corporation, a PSE-listed company. He was also the President and CEO of AC Ventures Holding Corp. He was also a Director of several Ayala companies, including publicly listed Globe Telecom, Inc., Integrated Micro-electronics Inc., and SSI Group, Inc. He Also served as a director of a number of Ayala group companies including those involved in and the education, energy, infrastructure, industrial technologies, and healthcare. He was also a director of the company that operates Zalora Philippines. He remains a director of Mynt, operator of GCash.
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METROBANK: Fabian S. Dee, 60, currently serves as the President of the Metropolitan Bank and Trust Company (Metrobank), with assets estimated at 2.58 trillion pesos ($45.5 billion). It is one of the leading universal banks in the Philippines. With an extensive banking career spanning 38 years, Dee possesses expertise in treasury operations, corporate banking, and retail banking. Dee's association with the Metrobank Group began in 2000 when he assumed leadership of the bank's largest business centre. He has been at the helm of five different companies. He holds the position of President & Executive Director at Metropolitan Bank & Trust Co. He is also on the board of Metrobank Foundation, Inc., BancNet, Inc., Bankers Association of the Philippines and FMIC Equities, Inc.
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CHINABANK: Romeo D. Uyan, Jr., 60, was named as the bank's President and CEO effective April 1, 2023. Chinabank, founded in Binondo Manila in 1920, today has assets valued at 1.309 trillion pesos ($23.09 billion). Uyan also serves as Vice Chairman of China Bank Capital. An investment banker with over two decades of trading, financing, and structuring experience in the Asia Pacific region, Uyan has an impressive resume that includes previous stints as managing director in UBS AG-Singapore Branch and Barclays Capital. Uyan’s academic background is also nothing short of impressive. He graduated cum laude with a Management Engineering degree from the Ateneo de Manila University and earned his MBA from the prestigious Johnson Graduate School of Management in Cornell University, New York.
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RCBC: Eugene S. Acevedo is the current President and CEO of Rizal Commercial Banking Corp (RCBC), founded in 1960 in Manila, with assets estimated at 1.181 trillion pesos ($20.8 billion). He actually graduated with a BS in Physics (high honours) from the University of San Carlos. With over 30 years’ experience, Acevedo began his career at Citibank, where he was an Executive Trainee in 1987. By 1995, he was Vice President at Citibank Hong Kong and, in 1997, became Treasury Marketing Head of Citibank Manila. He took higher managerial positions, before being appointed Managing Director in 2005 and was Country Treasurer for the Philippines and then Hong Kong. In his last post at Citi, he led the Hong Kong/Taiwan/Macau Global Markets Cluster, and was Treasurer of Citicorp International Ltd. He also joined Philippine National Bank as its President and CEO from 2010-2011, later moving on to become SEVP of Union Bank. At Union Bank, he led six acquisitions and built a mass market business. He completed the Advanced Management Program at Harvard, and has likewise completed specialist certificate courses in data science, fintech, AI, and blockchain cryptocurrency from the British Computer Society, the Wharton School, The Blockchain Council, Johns Hopkins University, MIT, and Oxford University.
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UNIONBANK Of THE PHILIPPINES: Edwin R. Bautista, 61, is president, CEO and director, Union Bank of the Philippines (assets $17 billion). Trained as an engineer, he has been the head of five different companies. He is also concurrently the chairman at City Savings Bank, Inc. and also sits on the board of nine other companies. Edwin began his career as Brand Manager at Procter & Gamble, before taking on the role of President of the International Exchange Bank until its merger with UnionBank, and was also Vice President and Head of Citibank’s Global Transaction Services Group in the Philippines. He joined UnionBank in 1997 as Senior Vice President. UnionBank then embarked digitisation push, an ambitious venture which led to the creation of UBX, a financial technology company offering the Philippines' leading Open Finance platform.
Image Credit: UnionBank