Over the past years, MFG managed to navigate through the challenging global environment and grow rapidly. Now, with a global recession looming, where does your strategic focus lie and what are your key objectives?
The global economy, still reeling from the pandemic and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, is facing an increasingly gloomy and uncertain outlook. The recession introduced a lot of uncertainty and turbulence for the financial sector, which is hard-hit as well. The latest world economic projections are for slowing growth and soaring inflation rates.
In light of this, at MFG we direct our efforts to adequately respond to the current economic situation in line with our strategic goals and our organisation’s values of innovation, responsibility and humanity. It’s rather tempting to think of a global recession as a time to play it safe. However, at MFG we have a very lean plan to emerge from it as a winner.
MFG’s three key objectives are efficiency at all levels of the business flow, investment in information technology, adoption of digital and advanced analytics. In other words, we plan to use the downturns as an opportunity to further expand our business – to develop our major markets and step in the largest ones, like India and the US.
How do we get to do this? Match decisions with expertise and adopt technology in every single step. When the economy is flourishing, the business has every reason to produce as much as it can, sell as much as it may – if it focuses strength and resources in new technologies, it may be leaving money on the table. But when recession comes in and you have fewer clients willing to buy a product or simply there’s less money in the flow, operations need not be kept at maximum capacity, which frees up budget and resources to invest and develop digital technology and analytics.
Could you share any KPIs you will seek to achieve in the short and medium term?
MFG’s objectives are not to eliminate risk but to increase the odds of success. So while providing financial services at top-quality level, our KPIs are the following: Customer Satisfaction – we shall continue and strive to develop further more convenience, speed and simplicity of financial services usage, regardless if it is payments, credit or investment service; Internal Process Quality – efficiency at all levels of running our business, as I said above – matching decisions and moves with expertise; Employee Satisfaction – attracting more talents and retention, which we achieve in line with our organizational culture values, and Financial Performance Index – profit margin optimisation is always on the table.
In which segments do you see highest growth potential and how will you seek to tap it?
At MFG and in line with our expansion strategy, we have pinpointed the markets with the highest growth potential – these are the well developed markets like India and the US, not forgetting the Spanish market which is also developing pretty well. Everywhere, however, competition and high capital and regulatory requirements are making it difficult to achieve growth and create value through geographic expansion. So, step one is building a presence in only a few select cities of these markets. That is a viable option and corresponds with our strategy of efficiency and stability.
In terms of business modelling – digital technology and analytics in financial services has very high potential. I will mention our BNPL company, investment platform company, digital banking company, which we expect to develop and expand faster.
What are the main trends impacting the fintech industry globally and how is MFG responding in terms of products and services?
Our collective future is fintech. The mega trends influencing the financial services and driving the fintech payment innovations are the digital wallets, mobile payments, AI, and machine learning for security. At MFG we highlight the importance and focus intensely on secure mobile payments, AI and Regtech. AI is already a very successful hit, allowing faster transactions and giving customers the convenience and speed, they demand.
Yet, the financial sector is one of the most heavily regulated industries in the world and the trend is to tighten requirements further more. RegTech is already having a significant impact on regulatory compliance and is even becoming “tied” to the financial companies. At MFG, we are especially proud to announce that we are stepping into this market as well with our compliance software AML-CFT Platform which is designed and developed by us to fully support and increase regulatory compliance, reduce financial risk, and eliminate fraud and money laundering. It comprises the power of AI and technology by providing advanced tech solution to the growing compliance demands within the financial sector.
Following the introduction of automated credit approval, self-service electronic identification and electronic contract signing, what other innovations do you have in your pipeline?
There is a lot in fintech that should be done to help marginalised social groups. It indeed promises tremendous benefits to its users like – speed, convenience, simplicity, top quality service. There is just one problem: how to integrate users who until now have had only cash to trust for their financial transactions? At MFG with our Home Collected Credits Division we believe we have this major social role to help financial inclusion of marginalised socioeconomic profiles into the fintech. We’ve studied our clients’ behavior very well for the past 17 years. With close contact and personal attitude we have with them in provision of credit services, we understand that we can introduce carefully and effectively fintech services to overcome the mistrust in new technologies.
Fintech should help many currently marginalised segments to gain access to financial services to work in their favor, they wouldn’t have to wait days to years to do so and at MFG we think we know how to achieve it. This is something we consider to be an innovation with valuable social effect.