A Surigao City-based rural bank in the Northeast Mindanao region of Caraga said it will raise its authorized capital to P1.5 billion to P2 billion before the year is out.
Surigaonon Rural Banking Corp. founder Alfredo Bonpin said in an interview the advantage of his bank is that it does not have outside debt and “the only liability we have is our customer deposits, but our capital is much bigger than our deposits."
"We don’t also rely on money from the community, because we put up our own funds to assure our clients that everything is well taken cared off,” he added.
Bonpin gave no breakdown of SRBC's own finances and those of its subsidiaries and related firms. “If we put all together our subsidiary banks including other lending and financial institutions, we could have… an actual authorized capital of P1.5 billion as of today.”
Citing “security reasons,” he declined to reveal the number of SRBC clients, and how much deposits they accumulated in the past year.
“Honesty is my trademark in business, and that’s the reason why I achieved and succeeded in all my ventures,” Bonpin claimed.
He said he has majority ownership in other institutions, including the Rural Bank of Loreto, Frontier Bank in Cebu, and Evergreen Lending Corp.
Bonpin said SRBC has more than 100 employees.
SRBC’s chair and CEO is Dr. Rudy Medina.
SRBC, aside from its rural banking functions, is authorized by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas to engage in microlending activities.
Among its regular services and products are: premium savings deposit, special savings deposit, regular savings, time deposits, micro-savings and various loan programs like salary loans.
It offers commercial loans, agriculture loans, and an automatic payroll deduction system for public school teachers.
Surigao City — the commercial center of Surigao del Sur — has a population of 132,151 who depend mostly on mining, farming, fishing and tourism for livelihood.
According to the local government of Surigao City, SRBC is one of 15 banks operating in its jurisdiction.
The Mindanao Microfinance Council lists SRBC as one of 20 local banks providing microfinance to Mindanao residents and small businesses. — ELR/VS