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United Overseas Bank : UOBT aims for 1 million credit cards in two years

by September 2, 2016 General

Sept. 02–United Overseas Bank (Thai) (UOBT) aims to raise the number of its credit cards to 1 million in the next two years and maintain double-digit percentage growth for card spending.There are around 730,000 UOBT credit cards circulating in the market, up from 700,000 at the end of last year, said Tearavath Trirutdolokkul, executive director, head of card payment and unsecured products. The bank’s plastic card spending growth of 18.9% for the first half of the year was double the industry’s growth rate of 8.5%.The bank’s strong credit card spending could be attributed mainly to upper-income customers.“The bank aims for its card spending growth to be around 16-18% this year, higher than projected overall growth for the market of under 10%. Aggressive business strategies would give a boost to the bank,” he said.UOBT’s card spending growth had been in line with the market over the past two years. Its spending rose by 11% in 2014 compared with market growth of 10%, and by 8% in 2015 compared with 7% for the market.The Thai unit of the Singapore-based bank is also doubling the marketing budget for its credit card business this year. The two upper-income customer segments, Privi Miles and Prefer Platinum cardholders, are the bank’s focus this year.A minimum income of Privi Miles cardholders is set at 50,000 baht per month and 30,000 baht for Prefer Platinum cardholders. The two cards together account for more than 30% of the banks total credit cards, a ratio that is set to increase to 40-50% by 2018.Privi Miles and Prefer Platinum cards currently account for 40% of the bank’s total card spending.UOBT plans to launch a new card to capture young professional clients with a minimum income of 30,000 baht per month in the fourth quarter. The bank will also offer a new credit card to high net-worth customers who have minimum assets under management of 50 million baht or spend over 2 million baht per month in the second quarter next year.Mr Tearavath said the bank had kept non-performing loans (NPLs) for its credit cards at 2.3% in the first half of the year, up from 2.2% in the same period last year.The bank maintains a strong risk management regime for its unsecured loan business, with a 50% approval rate for new credit card applications.___(c)2016 the Bangkok Post (Bangkok, Thailand)Visit the Bangkok Post (Bangkok, Thailand) at www.bangkokpost.comDistributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.© Tribune Content Agency, source Regional News