Thursday, 18 July 2024

CCB's wealth management and digital journey strengthen consumer protection

5 min read

By Hugh Zeng

China Construction Bank achieved a sound financial performance in its retail business, with individual client assets under management (AUM) of $2.25 trillion at the end of 2021.

  • CCB commanded a leading retail ROE of 15.1% in China
  • Wealth management, an important starting point to achieve common prosperity
  • Realising customer-centric digital operations, from acquisition to activation
  • Pursuing consumer protection, from complaint management to system optimisation

China Construction Bank (CCB) strengthened the “New Finance” initiative in 2021, which encapsulates social responsibilities to provide top-class customer service and achieve sound results. With strong financial performance and achievement in risk management, CCB won the Best Retail Bank in Asia Pacific, Best Retail Bank in China and Best Mega Retail Bank in China at The Asian Banker Excellence in Retail Finance Programme 2022.

CCB commanded a leading retail ROE of 15.1% in China

In 2021, CCB posted a retail revenue of $55.2 billion (RMB 350.3 billion), up 7% year-on-year (YoY). Total retail profit amounted to $33.8 billion (RMB 214.7 billion), which contributed 56.74% of the bank’s total profit. The bank's return on equity (ROE) of 15.1% is one of the highest among the banks in China. The bank focused on customer life cycle management and adopted artificial intelligence (AI), biometrics, big data and other technologies to provide comprehensive financial services to customers in the simplest and swiftest way. 

CCB further strengthens its risk management capabilities. Retail non- performing loan (NPL) ratio decreased from 0.41% in 2020 to 0.4% in 2021. 

Wealth management, an important starting point to achieve common prosperity 

With the continuous improvement of the income level of Chinese residents, the demand for wealth protection and accumulation has become more common and diversified. As one of China’s four major state-owned banking institutions, CCB adheres to the “new financial” concept of "serving the majority rather than the few". The bank regards wealth management as an important starting point to achieve common prosperity, which is a social and economic goal that aims to reduce inequalities and improve the mechanism of wealth redistribution. It takes the lead in the industry to actively implement the value proposition of "common prosperity" by developing wealth management. 

At the end of 2021, CCB’s 730 million individual client base had accumulated assets under management (AUM) of RMB 15 trillion ($2.25 trillion), registering an increase of RMB 1.39 trillion ($210 billion) from 2020, and was ranked first among the “big four” banks.

In the process of promoting the mega wealth management strategy, CCB focused on four aspects: First, "inclusive"- the bank is committed to serve the investment and wealth management needs of over 700 million customers. It strives to make high-quality financial services to better meet the needs of more people for a better life. 

Second is "Intelligent"- CCB fully digitises the field of wealth management. It provides front-line employees with an intelligent "toolbox" for investment research, asset allocation, and marketing. On the other hand, it continuously optimises customer-end digital service platform to improve the online wealth management customer journey. 

Third is "professional"- CCB is striving to build "three teams" of buy-side investment research, investment consultants and customer managers to improve the professional capabilities of the team. 

Last  is "focus"- CCB is accelerating the formation of an operation and management system centred on AUM, anchoring the assessment indicators, business plans and resource allocation to AUM growth, and guiding the whole bank to "focus" on the implementation of mega wealth management transformation.

Realising customer-centric digital operations, from acquisition to activation

In recent years, CCB has taken digital operation as one of its core development strategies. It continued to forge its digital operation capabilities, to have accurate insight and meet customer service needs. It summed up a set of methodologies from customer acquisition to customer activation.

First, CCB started to build 10 O2O (online to offline) retail ecological scenarios that are close to customers' lives, such as catering, travel and shopping, which connects branches and surrounding merchants. Second, the bank crafted a series of digital brands such as "Zhihuizhengwu", "Yunongtong", and “Huidongni”, by which the bank constructed the ecosystem to acquire customers. Finally, the customer traffic obtained from internal and external scenarios is deviated to the two bank apps, personal mobile banking and the CCB Life app to further activate customers.

At the end of 2021, the number of CCB’s personal mobile banking users reached 417 million, with a YoY increase of 7.52%, and CCB Life app has  over 34 million registered users, and 15 million were active users.

Pursuing consumer protection, from complaint management to system optimisation

While cultivating digital operations, CCB attached great importance to the protection of consumer rights and interests. The bank integrated consumer rights protection into corporate governance, corporate culture construction, and business development strategies. It continued to improve systems and mechanisms. 

In 2021, CCB actively promoted and improved the end-to-end process control for consumer protection work, and ensured the effective implementation of the requirements in all aspects of business operation and management. It strictly implemented the consumer protection review process before products and services are launched. 

CCB has strengthened the consumer protection review and control mechanism. It conducted a pre-event risk control, and effectively protect the rights and interests of consumers. The bank integrated financial education into customers' day-to-day activities. It built a bank-level knowledge warehouse with both standardised and tailored contents, created a "centralised + mobilised" customer education matrix, and promoted digital financial knowledge education and publicity, covering 300 million consumers in 2021. 

Looking ahead, the curtain of the wealth management transformation of China's retail banking is being lifted. Platform development, smart operations, professional capabilities, and sustainable development models are the key to success. It is worth looking forward to see how CCB will maintain its leading edge through its mega wealth management strategy, customer-centric philosophy and digital operations.


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The Asian Banker is the region’s most authoritative provider of strategic business intelligence to the financial services community. The global research company has offices in Singapore, Malaysia, Manila, Hong Kong, Beijing, and Dubai, as well as representatives in London, New York, and San Francisco. Its business revolves around three core business lines: publications, research services and forums.

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