Cambodia Investment Review
In the face of significant challenges posed by geopolitical instability and the ongoing pandemic, Cambodia’s Chief Bank has delivered a stellar financial performance in 2022, guided by the strategic vision of its CEO, Dr. Morarith Soeung. In spite of uncertainties caused by the Ukraine war and the general state of the global market, the bank has remained resilient, demonstrating robust liquidity and capital positions.
During 2022, Chief Bank saw its deposit collections escalate to over $130 million, a remarkable achievement in the current global scenario. The bank’s diverse clientele included individual clients, high-net-worth clients, local enterprises, globally renowned insurance companies, and local governments. This broad base of clients is a testament to the increased recognition and trust that the Chief Bank brand has garnered amidst the pandemic.
Enthusiastic adoption of digital transformation
The bank’s financial strength is equally attributable to its enthusiastic adoption of digital transformation. With a significant uptick in the use of the bank’s digital platforms, such as the Chief Easy App and the Bakong KHQR code, Chief Bank has been at the forefront of the digital banking revolution in Cambodia. By December 2022, the bank’s deposits outstanding rose to over $136 million, marking an impressive 17.8% increase from December 2021. Moreover, the total assets reached $220 million, resulting in a near 50% increase in net income from 2021.
These accomplishments can be traced back to the strategic action plans that Chief Bank has been executing since its establishment in 2013. One of the bank’s refreshed strategic priorities includes being a purpose-led organization, with a keen focus on promoting prosperity through unique diversity.
“We have been building on the strong foundations laid over the years and taking strategic actions that are now bearing fruit. This was evident in the past year as we navigated the real-life stress test of the pandemic with remarkable financial and operational resilience,” said Dr. Soeung.
With a host of proven digital capabilities and a remodeled risk framework that has withstood rigorous stress tests, Chief Bank is all set to substantially scale up its mass market retail presence. To achieve this, the bank plans to leverage enhanced data analytics and deliver a superior end-to-end digital experience for its customers.
Extending their existing scale and impact
Dr. Soeung outlined the bank’s strategy for the upcoming years, saying, “We’re looking beyond our current operations and extending our existing scale and impact. We’re committed to unlocking the power of our unique physical footprint by digitally delivering our clients best-in-class emerging and developed market capabilities, insights, and solutions.”
The bank is also accelerating innovation to improve its operational efficiency, tap new income sources, and enrich its clients’ experience. As part of this mission, it’s recommitting to an improving return on equity (ROE), creating opportunities that, over time, could potentially constitute the majority of its income.
As Chief Bank looks forward to 2023, Dr. Soeung expressed heartfelt gratitude to the bank’s clients, colleagues, board members, the National Bank of Cambodia, and local authorities for their unwavering support. He added, “We are confident of becoming a better, innovative bank, a bank of first choice that our employees, customers, and stakeholders can genuinely trust. We look forward to welcoming and best serving you.”
As 2022 draws to a close, Chief Bank, under the strategic direction of Dr. Soeung, has shown that even in challenging times, significant progress can be achieved through strategic thinking, agile adaptation, and unwavering commitment to its purpose and customers. The bank’s journey in 2022 offers a blueprint for other organizations navigating the tumultuous seas of the current global economic scenario.