China Construction Bank Corp. (00939.HK) is gearing up to tap internet finance and other online platforms, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported Wednesday.
Nearly 90 percent of the lender’s business are conducted by electronic means, the report said, citing vice president Yang Wensheng.
The bank, the country’s third largest by outlets, has suspended branch expansion and frozen hiring.
As of the end of 2014, it had 14,856 branches and 370,000 employees in mainland China.
Last year, it ramped up its electronic services to more than half of its traditional physical business.
Yang expects physical banking to focus more on complicated consultation services and product sales.
“The cost pressure from physical presence and staff is enormous but we are not shrinking our network,” he said.
Electronic banking, introduced in 2012, accounted for 46.28 billion yuan (US$7.46 billion) of all transactions, up 66.6 percent from a year earlier.
The lender has 1.12 trillion yuan worth of outstanding financial products, 70 percent of which were sold online.
This article appeared in the Hong Kong Economic Journal on April 8.
Translation by Vey Wong
[Chinese version 中文版]
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