One Network Bank to open new branch in Surigao City

The One Network Bank (ONB) is looking to expand by 19 percent growth in net earnings for 2009, or from P244 million last year to P288 million.

“ONB remains upbeat for this year despite the global crisis considering credit demand will remain strong with our participation in the Department of Education (DepEd) salary loans program, and our continuing One Banana Program growers loans,” Alex V. Buenaventura, ONB president said.

One Banana Program loans go to cavendish banana small farmer growers which grew by 19 percent from only P477 million in 2007 to P569 million last year.

Likewise, the market demand for other agricultural products is expected to remain strong in the agri-based economy of Mindanao.

Buenaventura added that the fluid environment would in turn support the high deposit generation targets of ONB especially in the countryside.

The Mindanao-wide rural bank is forecasting a deposit growth of 30 percent this year, or from P6 billion last year to P7.8 billion this year.

It is expecting loan growth to reach a bullish 36 percent to P8 billion from the P5.9 billion in 2008.

Buenaventura revealed that eight branches would be opened this year. Three branch applications have already been approved by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilpinas (BSP) and another five is in the pipeline subject to regulatory approval.

The three new branches are located in Surigao City, Dipolog City and Sindangan, Zamboango del Norte.

To compliment its branch network, ONB plans to open 42 new automated teller machines (ATMs) to bring its total network to onsite and offsite units.

ONB reported recently total resources amounting to P8.75 billion last year, up by 35 percent from the P6.49 billion end 2007.

Buenaventura said that deposit funds were able to fund 98 percent of loan portfolio (loan to deposit intermediation ratio), making ONB well leveraged while staying self-reliant in terms of funding loans with cheaper own funds.

“Seventy-one percent of the P6 billion deposit represent cash accounts, savings accounts (CASA) deposits which are low cost funds versus only 29 percent in high-cost time deposits,” the bank president said.

ONB is the product of a three-way consolidation between Network Rural Bank (Davao del Sur) Inc., the Rural Bank of Panabo (Davao del Norte) Inc., and the Provident Rural Bank of Cotabato (North Cotabato) Inc.

It is presently the largest rural bank in Mindanao with various alliances with domestic and foreign financial institutions. – Ted Torres, Philstar


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