Blom Bank’s Chahwan receives The Asian Banker Retail Financial Services Leadership Achievement Award in the Middle East 2018
Jocelyne Chahwan, head of retail banking, BLOM Bank was recognised, for leading the bank’s digitalisation journey and successfully overseeing several developments in its retail banking business, including the acquisition and integration of the Lebanese retail banking and wealth management business of HSBC Bank Middle East.
- Jocelyne Chahwan has been a constant champion of Blom Bank’s digitalisation jounrey
- She is a member of the digital committee of the bank, and a big player in its branch transformation
- She was also instrumental in starting the bank’s retail banking business in Jordan in 2004
Jocelyne Chahwan received the Retail Financial Services Leadership Achievement Award in the Middle East 2018 at The Asian Banker’s International Excellence in Retail Financial Services 2018 awards ceremony, held in conjunction with The Future of Finance, Middle East and Africa at the Condrad Dubai, UAE.
Under Chahwan leadership, the retail lending portfolio constitutes around 50% of the total bank’s loan portfolio and contributes 25% of the banks yearly profits. In 2017, the bank grew its asset by 10.2% and deposits by 11.8%. Operating revenue grew almost 16% from 2013 to 2017 despite the challenging economic conditions in Lebanon. The bank has been recognised for its retail banking and consumer finance products.
The highlight of her career was in 2017, when she successfully oversaw the acquisition and integration of the Lebanese retail banking and wealth management business of HSBC Bank Middle East Limited, an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of HSBC Holdings plc. It had entered into an agreement to sell its business in Lebanon to Blom Bank. Chahwan was appointed a member of the steering committee running the whole acquisition and was the head of the retail banking and wealth management stream.
Chahwan has been a constant champion of the digitalisation drive in the bank, working towards achieving a paperless environment through the digitisation of the workflow model for credit approval and decision making. Additionally, Chahwan has been developing and enhancing the bank’s digital platforms. She is also currently working on linking standalone silos in order to create a seamless 360 degrees customer view. Chahwan also had a vision that social media was the new communication platform that the bank must adopt at an early stage.
Consequently, Blom Bank was one of the first banks to launch a Facebook page through which customers can inquire about products and services.
Standing from left: Emmanuel Daniel, Chairman, The Asian Banker; Jocelyne Chahwan, Head of Retail Banking, Blom Bank; Gordian Gaeta, International Resource Director, The Asian Banker; and Richard Hartung, International Resource Director, The Asian Banker.
Chahwan is a member of the digital committee of the bank, and a big player in the branch transformation. In addition, she was behind several innovative digital services and products. Some of which: the Live Chat and the Video Chat service, the BLOMPay feature that allows cardholders to pay for their transactions directly from their mobile phones, and others. Chahwan also spearheads the work on open API projects including the evaluation of potential fintechs.
During the period under review, she was negotiating partnerships with Samsung Pay and preparing the infrastructure for ApplePay. Chahwan was also behind the instant redemption of the bank’s loyalty program at participating merchants, and behind the online redemption of the points/miles, which was also a first of its kind service. Chahwan also contributed to launching another first of its kind service, namely, the BLOM eCash, through which BLOM customers are able to make cashless ATM withdrawals.
Chahwan was also instrumental in starting the bank’s retail banking business in Jordan from 2004. Today it constitutes about 80% of the business in Jordan. Blom Bank is the market leader in car loans with more than 40% market share. Chahwan replicated the successfully established business model in Lebanon to Jordan while adapting some parts to local regulations. She is currently member of the advisory committee overlooking Jordan. Chahwan also plays a critical role in the development of the retail business in Egypt and Iraq, and previously Syria.
Keywords: Digitalisation, Retail Banking, Wealth Management
Institution: Blom Bank
Region: Middle East
Guest: Jocelyne Chahwan