2022 Special Report – Retail Banker International Asia Trailblazer Awards

Editor's Note

A huge thank you to all participating banks in the 13th annual RBI Asia Trailblazer awards and the warmest of congratulations to all of the winners.
Once again, we received a record number of entries. But that is only part of the story. The quality of the entries received was off the scale.

Overall, some 44 institutions are recognised as winners, up from 31 last year, with a further four institutions recognised as highly commended.
To be able to recognise almost 50 banks in the awards this year is hugely encouraging. I must also say a massive thank you to the judges and my colleagues at MEED for the phenomenal task of administering the entries and running the awards this year.

Asia Trailblazer of the Year 2022 (Institution): ICICI Bank ICICI is a worthy winner of the major award this year, Asia Trailblazer of the year 2022. In fiscal 2022, the bank grew core operating profit by over 22% to INR383.5bn with profits after tax up by a whopping 44%.

Total deposits grew by 14.2% year-on-year at March 31, 2022 with average savings account deposits ahead by 22.7% year-on-year. The bank’s cost of deposits continues to be truly world class. Retail loans soared by some 20% with the bank’s SME portfolio ahead by over one-third.

These impressive metrics are all boosted by the bank’s innovative digital offerings and platforms like InstaBIZ and Merchant Stack. Indeed, the bank’s various digital platforms such as iMobile Pay, internet banking platforms, InstaBIZ and Trade Online provide end-to-end seamless digital journeys, personalised solutions and value-added features to customers and enable more data driven cross sell and up sell.

In line with the bank’s philosophy of open architecture, of its digital platforms, ICICI made its InstaBIZ app interoperable, so all benefits of the app are now available to all merchants including those who do not have a current account with ICICI. This initiative enables merchants to instantly create digital collection solutions like UPI ID and QR code and start collecting money from their customers.

Asia Trailblazer of the Year 2022 (Individual): Lay Choo Ong

Standard Chartered appointed Lay Choo Ong as head of retail banking in Hong Kong in June 2020. Prior to assuming this key role within the bank, she held senior positions in group wealth management and retail banking since joining the bank in 20 1. She led the development of the client proposition and strategy for the affluent client segment and was promoted to regional head of wealth management in 2017, in addition to her role as global head of wealth proposition. Ong is deservedly recognised for her outstanding success in driving innovation and transforming the client journey with a human touch and delivering demonstrable success in growing market share and profits.

StanChart, UOB, RCBC, PT Bank, Emirates NBD: multiple wins-world class innovation

Standard Chartered is not just recognised for the lead award in the individual category-across the awards as a whole the bank wins a whopping eight categories.

UOB wins seven categories with RCBC winning five and PT Bank four. Maybank, ICICI, RHB and Emirates NBD all win three awards.

Other significant multiple awards winners include Taishin, E. Sun, Security Bank, Bank of Ayudhya, Kasikornbank and Siam Commercial.

Singapore 9 March 2023

Hearty congratulations again to all of the winners and here’s to the 14th annual Asia Trailblazer Awards in 2023 and a date for your diaries. We are determined to ensure that the 2023 awards are the biggest and best yet-and look forward to celebrating the best of the best in consumer finance in the region in person with the winners in Singapore on 9 March.

Click here to download the 2022 Special Report; In-depth analysis of winning strategies and the mindsets that drive success inspired by the winning entries for the 13th Annual Retail Banker International Asia Trailblazer Awards.

Douglas Blakey


Retail Banker International