RHB eyes 30% more new cardholders by 1Q19


RHB Bank Bhd aims to boost its credit cards issuance by 30% by the first quarter of next year largely with the introduction of its new RHB dual credit cards.

RHB Bank acting head of group retail banking Nazri Othman said the bank presently has about 500,000 credit cards issued across the group.

“On average, we are expecting to issue slightly over 10,000 credit cards per month, and we expect at least 60% of the new card issuances will come from the dual credit cards,” he said at the launch of the cards in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

The banking group yesterday introduced its RHB Cash Back credit card and RHB Rewards credit card for both  its MasterCard and Visa, which provide its customers with options to redeem benefits and enjoy savings.

The bank wants to capture both the cash back and rewards card markets.

By consolidating the features of the two cards, the group will be able to capture approximately 80% of the credit-card spending of an average customer, Nazri said.

“So far for 2018, we have seen our credit-card spend (for all RHB credit cards) achieving year-on-year growth at about 15%, while the average market growth rate stands at 8%.

“With the new dual credit cards, we hope to sustain the same growth in credit-card spend for next year,” he added.

The RHB Cash Back credit card offers up to 10% cash back on expenditure for daily essentials such as petrol, dining, utilities and groceries, allowing customers to earn cash back value of more than RM600 annually.

Meanwhile, the RHB Rewards credit card allows customers to earn reward points up to 10 times the amount spent on categories for purchases like movie tickets, online shopping, overseas spending, health and insurance.

Customers can earn unlimited rewards points and access all retail outlets with no annual fee for the first year.

Nazri believes there is room to grow for credit cards as the segment accounted only just over 2% or around RM2 billion of the banking group’s total retail outstanding of over RM90 billion.

Meanwhile, he said the government’s recent announcement that it will allow property crowdfunding platforms as an alternative financing source for first-time house buyers is a step in the right direction as it involves the private sector providing financing for home purchasing to the public.

However, he noted that details on the equity sharing — particularly should house prices drop — are still scarce.

“My personal opinion is, on the equity part, who is going to own the property? Is it the bank, a consortium, or the individual?

“Also, if the property price drops after those five years, who is going to bear the losses or be responsible for the gap in financing against the property price? These things remain unanswered, but it’s still early days,” Nazri said.

Under the crowdfunding scheme, the buyer acquires a selected property by paying 20% of its price, while the remaining 80% will be fulfilled via potential investors who are interested to fund the acquisition in exchange for the potential value appreciation of the property over a certain period of time.

After five years, the homebuyer can opt to sell the property or stay on by refinancing the home via other means.

Nazri said the new model will not significantly impact RHB’s mortgage business, as not many first-time homebuyers would be able to pay 20% of the house price upfront, whereas a normal bank mortgage would only require an upfront payment of 10% of the price.