Established in 1963, Jammal Trust Bank SAL (JTB) is a prominent financial organisation, highly regarded by local and international monetary authorities. Several well-deserved awards have crowned its achievements over recent years ranging from assets and profitability growth, to financial solidity, strict adherence to local and international regulations, innovative financial products and services, as well as far-reaching communication campaigns.
For over 50 years Jammal Trust Bank has been investing first and foremost in its clients, and has never lost track of the two pillars of success throughout its journey: Lebanese expatriates breaking new ground overseas, and the nation’s smaller and medium-sized entrepreneurs. These two segments, representing different aspects of the economic spectrum, are a reflection of the bank’s strong belief in the Lebanese people and are the constituent parts of the bank’s diverse portfolio and risk management model.
Sound, modern banking practices and compliance with corporate governance have guided Jammal Trust Bank towards its strategic objectives and mission statement. The outlook for the future will be more promising as the bank continues to:
- Improve upon its technological infrastructure
- Invest in talent recruitment and development
- Expand geographically and tap into new markets
- Consolidate its position as the market leader in terms of SMEs lending growth and micro-credit
- Boost its brand recognition.
However, Jammal Trust Bank, along with most Lebanese banks, is facing some stern challenges, including:
- Political instability: the overall political and security situation in the region has adversely affected Lebanon and its banks’ balance sheets. Thankfully, this turmoil is gradually being resolved and there are signs of light at the end of the tunnel.
- Regulatory: the regulatory authorities have introduced tighter requirements for managing credit risks. This had the effect of increasing the cost of lending and pressured profit margins across the banking sector.
- Reporting: the bank faces various reporting challenges, including, the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS 9), the Common Reporting Standard (CRS) which will be put in effect by the OECD in 2017 and the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), reporting to the US Treasury. This combined with changes (scale and scope) in the bank’s reporting to local regulatory authorities are on the agenda to be overcome.
- AML compliance: the US Treasury continues to lead the fight against money laundering and financing terrorism by identifying, following and exposing suspected individuals and entities, especially where the US dollar is the currency of choice and where the US has a jurisdiction. These heightened regulations have had their impacts on banks by implicitly increasing cost of compliance and driving profitability down.
Despite this shake up, Jammal Trust Bank continues to focus on differentiating itself from the competition in:
- Service: JTB’s aim will be to redefine ‘service excellence’. The bank wants its name to be synonymous with customer satisfaction, and to become the bank of choice for many individuals, focusing on households, micro, as well as SMEs.
- Financial inclusion: JTB has embarked on an aggressive strategy toward financial inclusion, a move that was encouraged by the Central Bank of Lebanon. JTB introduced new deposit products to target the micro and small depositors who have not yet been a part of the bank’s traditional customer base. JTB has been focusing most of its financial developments on the funding side, securing a stable source of deposits to tap into the surpluses of retail depositors.
- Market penetration: JTB has opened new branches and is in the process of opening even more, while relocating some of the existing ones to move closer to our client base and tap into new markets.
Jammal Trust Bank has been steadily climbing the ranks among Middle Eastern banks. It is in a solid position and the management is confident that in the years to come, it will achieve its goals. Jammal Trust Bank will relentlessly continue to deliver a steady growth, thanks to the unwavering commitment and efforts of its management and staff.