In the wake of recent announcements by local banks about downsizing of their branch network, APS Bank CEO Marcel Cassar has stated that his bank has no similar plans in the pipeline.
Questioned about these announcements, Cassar replied, “We are a long-standing community bank and still believe in the importance of being physically present for our customers. We have ten branches in Malta and one in Gozo, allowing us good coverage – and we would consider adding a couple more. This is a small network by any measure. Concurrently we are transforming our branches for the future needs of our customers, who will turn to their bankers increasingly for advice and counselling about their financial requirements. So our branches are looking more like modern living rooms with a range of spaces – from small private pods to larger meeting rooms”.
He added, “Equally we have been intensifying our digital presence, via an upgraded internet banking platform and mobile banking. In fact we are proud to boast that the launch of our omni-channel solution ‘myAPS’ last Summer has been a huge success. ‘myAPS’ enables customers to carry out transactions seamlessly over different digital channels as well as our branches and ATMs. Our offering will be further boosted by an enhanced cards offering, ATM reach and contact channels over the coming months.”
Cassar concluded, “So what you are seeing is a transmutation of our channels to address the changing habits of our customers while at the same time continuing to believe in the role, albeit changing, of the physical branch. We believe that such a model fits our business strategy for the coming years.”