The Strategic Highlights for the year 2022 are organised around the Bank’s four Strategic Imperatives. While the Financial Highlights captures the key details of the Bank’s financial performance, the Strategic Highlights encapsulates how this performance was achieved in the context of the Bank’s long-term vision.
- Total assets of the Group approach Rs. 2.5 Tn.
- High level of diversification in its income and portfolios across a multitude of parameters.
- Increased the impairment provision for the year 2022 to Rs. 71.462 Bn., an increase of 189.41%, the highest ever annual provision in the history of
- The Bank’s deposit base grew by 32.66% Year-on-Year (YoY) to Rs. 1.914 Tn., while the Bank’s CASA ratio stood at 38.36% at end of 2022, the best in the Banking Sector.
- Overseas operations accounted for 16.9% of the
assets and contributed to over 70% of the pre-tax
profits of the Group.
- The Rs. 10 Bn. debenture issue further strengthened the Tier II capital base of the Bank, bridged maturity mismatches in the assets and liabilities, expanded the lending portfolio, especially in the SME segment and export-oriented industries to support the national economy.
- The Bank received two awards from IFC for its performance in climate financing and environmental consciousness.
- The Bank’s Green Financing portfolio has contributed to reduce 229,752.47 tCO2e GHG emissions by end 2022.
- Treasury navigated the challenging context by conducting derivative transactions, exploring opportunities for overseas expansions, expanding networking sessions, and launching an online platform for foreign exchange (FOREX) transactions to augment the FOREX position of the Bank.
- The Board approved a Group Conduct Risk Management Policy Framework to further strengthen risk management and corporate governance.
- Commercial Bank was declared the largest SME lender for 2021 as well, by the Ministry of Finance, Sri Lanka.
- In March 2022 commemorating International Women’s Day, the Bank dedicated the first quarter of 2022 to its flagship “Anagi” Women’s Banking portfolio.
- During the year 2022, the Bank conducted capacity-building programmes for 425 women entrepreneurs.
- Women connected SMEs stand at 50% of the entire SME loan portfolio of the Bank as of end 2022.
- The number of members of the ComBank BIZ Club has grown to over 5,000, comprising 50% of the Bank’s SME portfolio.
- As per the CBSL instructions, the Bank considered special moratoriums for loans for the value of Rs. 174.921 Bn. of which Rs. 41.429 Bn. represented SMEs.
- The Bank which channels 18% of the country’s export volumes, entered into a strategic partnership with the National Chamber of Exporters of Sri Lanka to create another platform to extend financial solutions to exporters, with due emphasis on SMEs.
- The new and enhanced Bank’s corporate website was launched with access to content in English, Sinhala and Tamil, an ultra-smooth interface with interactive multimedia material, enhanced navigation, experience-customisation, smarter search options and tools, and resources that make it extra user-friendly and informative.
- The Bank widened its senior citizen account holder base by relaunching its “Udara” Senior Citizens Account with new features and special interest rates and offering more rewards.
- The Bank launched the “Dirishakthi Value
Chain Development Programme” to support
- The Bank enabled “Visa Direct” and “MasterCard Send” card-based fund transfer facilities for the first time in Sri Lanka, pushing the boundaries of customer service and experience through innovative products and services.
- Debit and prepaid cardholders are enabled to transfer funds to any locally-issued Visa and MasterCard Debit, Credit, or Prepaid card through the Bank’s ATMs, CRMs, and Q+ Payment App, delivering enhancement of functionality and convenience.
- The Bank became the first Sri Lankan Bank to introduce card acceptance through Android smartphones, allowing its merchants to conveniently and cost effectively accept card payment transactions.
LEADING THROUGH INNOVATION
- The Bank’s Core Banking server infrastructure was upgraded to the state-of-the-art IBM POWER 10 technology with an investment of Rs. 1.2 Bn., enhancing the performance, security, and reliability of the core banking system.
- The Bank was the largest facilitator of CEFT Transactions in Sri Lanka with over 27 Mn. transactions during the year 2022.
- The Bank’s digital banking retail customer base grew by 49% YoY, and its digital banking business customer base grew to over 43,000 users.
- Number of existing customers migrated to online banking increased to over 265,000.
- “Flash”, the all-in-one digital banking solution won the award for the “Digital Banking Initiative of the Year” in Sri Lanka at the 2021 Asian Banking and Finance awards.
- The personal loan request feature on ComBank Digital which facilitates customers to request a personal loan without visiting a bank branch, was adjudged the “Best Frictionless Credit Evaluation Initiative” in
Sri Lanka by the Asian FinTech Academy at the
“Asian Digital Finance Forum and Awards”.
- A dedicated IT monitoring team was convened to provide, faster response and resolution for IT system issues and take proactive measures to increase the availability of IT services, 24x7.
- The operational efficiency and the service level agreements were enhanced by setting up a Help Desk operating 365 days a year.
- Three machine learning predictive analysis models (Transaction analysis, Sentiment analysis, and Macroeconomic analysis) were launched to improve Data Analytics and Machine learning to identify and target potential borrowers for cross-selling and
- Achieved improvements in most of the productivity and efficiency ratios recording the best performance over the past five years.
- Transformed strategically to ensure Bank’s readiness to offer uninterrupted services to its stakeholders through the implementation of the Business Continuity Management framework.
- Continued to focus on preserving the quality of the loan book, managing interest rates, and liquidity while improving compliance to minimise reputational risk.
- Reviewed and revised the disaster recovery plans while managing the footprint of COVID-19 and associated phenomena.
- Used Early Warning Systems extensively with a greater emphasis on real-time data and machine learning models.
- Continued to engage in cordial relations with the CBEU, with negotiations fueling dialogue between the two entities, provisioning two-way rewards to the Bank as well as the employee union.
- Provided a range of training and development schemes to ensure that the employees are custodians of lifelong learning and strategic self-development that can be vehicles of self-actualisation.
- Accorded high emphasis to employee morale and safety in a disruptive environment to cushion employee livelihoods, health, and well-being, while championing the collective strength of the employee base.