Banco Comercial e de Investimentos (BCI) and American Express signed a strategic partnership agreement on 28 March, to make BCI the commercial partner for the use of American Express cards in Mozambique. The ceremony took place in the auditorium of BCI’s new headquarters in Maputo, Mozambique.
The document was signed, on behalf of BCI, by CEO Paulo Sousa and by Catherine Malec, Vice-President for the Development of Banking Partnerships for Africa, American Express.
Under this partnership, BCI facilitates American Express cards across the whole of its point-of-sales (POS) and ATM network. Under the agreement, BCI is also responsible for managing relationships with traders, as well as expanding the American Express network in Mozambique.
BCI CEO, Paulo Sousa considers the new partnership to be of tremendous importance. “As BCI is a leading bank in the market and a pioneer in [payment] cards, ATM, POS and mobile phone payment systems in Mozambique, adding the American Express brand to its portfolio allows it to expand its position as the first choice bank for international customers and to boost its domestic and international profile.
“I can state that the widespread acceptance of American Express network cards by hotels, restaurants, rent-a-car firms, commercial establishments and BCI’s other POS systems customers used by us, was far in excess of all of our expectations, leading us to believe that the success of this partnership is a foregone conclusion. We also know that American Express customers are associated with the tourism and business sectors and will undoubtedly strengthen Mozambique as a tourist destination in Africa’s southern region and promote the development of tourism, which has major potential in Mozambique,” added Sousa.
In turn, Catherine Malec stated that her company chose BCI as its partner in Mozambique because “this bank shares our high levels of quality, security and trust… this partnership reflects our strategy of associating with the best banks and financial institutions worldwide.”
BCI: History and milestones
- 1996 A financial services company is formed in Maputo in January 1996, which will give rise to BCI. With an initial capital of MT30m, mainly funded by Mozambican investors, the name Banco Comercial e de Investimentos (BCI), SARL is established in June 1996.
- 1997 The equity structure is strengthened with an investment from Portugal’s largest bank – Caixa Geral de Depósitos (CGD) with an equity stake of 60%.
- 1997 BCI begins to operate as a commercial bank on 24 April, through its Pigalle Branch in Maputo.
- 2003 Merger between BCI and Banco Fomento (BF) with BCI’s assimilation of all BF assets, in December. The bank then changes its commercial name to BCI Fomento. The merger results in an investment by another major shareholder in the form of the Portuguese BPI Group, with around 30% of the shares.
- 2007 Change to BCI’s equity structure, in November, with the exit of SCI Group and entrée of the Mozambican INSITEC Group holding 18.12% of the shares. CGD’s equity stake of 51% and BPI Group’s 30%, remain unchanged to date.
- 2008 Shareholders submit a new corporate mission for the bank: BCI will become a universal retail bank geared to all market segments, and contribute towards promoting the start up of banking services and the sustained development of Mozambique with the aim of becoming the market leader.
- 2011 BCI opens its 100th branch in the town of Ressano Garcia.
- 2012 Launch of daki debit card with social responsibility as one of its features. Any purchases with an amount of 0.15% made on POS terminals is paid directly to charities at no cost to cardholders.
- 2014 In a first for banks in Mozambique, BCI opens 11 branches in September. The same performance is repeated in December.
- 2014 With a total of 168 business units, BCI ends the year with Mozambique’s largest branch office network.
- 2014 BCI achieves its one-millionth customer milestone on 29 December.
- 2015 BCI ends the year by strengthening its branch office network to 192 business units across Mozambique.
- 2016 BCI celebrates its 20th birthday. On 31 December 2016, it is Mozambique’s undisputed market leader in deposits, credit, business revenue and assets and also has the largest branch office network (196 branches), number of ATMs (642) and POS terminals (9,660).
- 2017 Inauguration of BCI’s new headquarters in Maputo.