The Digitally Enhanced Future

The Digitally Enhanced Future

By Richard Kung, Chief Financial Officer, CTBC Bank USA

Richard Kung, Chief Financial Officer, CTBC Bank USA

1. In light of your experience what are the trends and challenges you’ve witnessed happening with respect to the Revenue Management landscape?

Challenges include unpredictable yield curves with prolonged high short-term rates and extremely flat long-term rates directly and indirectly impacted by the current evolution of digital banks, trade conflicts, geo-political concerns and other uncertainties. Consumers are showing sensitivity to deposit pricing with even more challenges on loan pricing. Mega-banks have the resources to deploy both sophisticated digital banking with big data capabilities to grow or maintain their share of low-cost deposits, while community banks solely relying on interest income will likely to suffer net interest margin (NIM) compression.

"Providing tailored experiences for defined customers, however, would differentiate us from competitive peers"

2. Could you talk about your approach to identifying the right partnership providers from the lot?

There are limited resources, so community banks have to prioritize their strategic options from focusing on specialized segmented banking to high-tech based banking. At CTBC Bank USA, we continually monitor the ever-evolving financial industry and its various technology disruptors. There are numerous potential fintech partnership potentials within payment technology, robo advisory, banking automations, AI, etc., which we, like other community banks, continue to explore for viable options and a future right to play.

3. Could you elaborate on some interesting and impactful projects/initiatives you’re currently overseeing?

Enhancing the online banking platform to improve customer experience is a major ongoing project. Along with our community peers, we continuously explore areas of priority for both consumer and business on-line banking platforms. Given the scarcity of resources and our strategic position within a community bank, CTBC always carefully evaluates the right “qualifiers” to stay in the game.

4. What are some points of discussion that go on in your leadership panel? What are the strategic points you go by to steer the company forward?

Opportunities to drive growth are often discussed, though they are seen as a challenge for community banks. Providing tailored experiences for defined customers, however, would differentiate us from competitive peers. CTBC’s global presence means we are able to provide one-stop solutions for business customers while prudently selecting products and services for our current customer segment. The challenge is getting on board generation Z, which adopts and relies on fast-changing technologies.

5. Can you draw an analogy between your personality traits, hobbies and how they reflect on your leadership strategy?

Self-awareness is probably one of the most important personality traits a leader can possess, in order to balance oneself with others of complementary skills. I have immense curiosity, I’m constantly exploring and experimenting with new technologies, reading between the lines of financial reports for a feel of our competitors’ strategy, etc.

6. How do you see the evolution of the Revenue Management industry a few years from now with regard to some of its potential disruptions and transformations?

The ubiquity of digital and the development/deployment of 5G means all products, services and delivery of contents will be “on-demand”. For instance, tradition TV viewing is disappearing with Netflix, Hulu and YouTube TV. Similar concepts apply to the banking space where deposits and withdraws happen in real-time over an on-line platform. The disruption in payment technology may potentially place the credit card industry in jeopardy, while AI may provide instant, next best product and services in the blink of an eye.

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