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Finance Industry News

Cloud-technology drives financial inclusion in the Philippines


Oradian and Cantilan partner for the Philippines first regulated bank to drive financial inclusion via cloud technology

Cloud-technology drives financial inclusion in the Philippines


"We want to leverage the success of this pilot to encourage other financial institutions to look at how technology can be used to strengthen their core operations"
KellyHattel, Southeast Asia Department of ADB



Fast-growth Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) company Oradian has today announced the launch of its software with Cantilan Bank (CANBNK), making it the Philippines’ first regulated financial institution ever to leverage cloud-based technology. The partnership will enable Cantilan Bank to provide digital financial services to unbanked individuals in some of the most remote, hard-to-reach communities of Southeast Asia. The Philippines-based bank has integrated Oradian’s flagship cloud-based banking platform, Instafin, as its core banking system, which has also been integrated to transact with an entire network of ATMs. Supported by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and aligned with the Central Bank of the Philippines' (BSP) digital transformation journey, Cantilan Bank is fast-tracking its digitisation as it looks to improve access to financial services across the country.

In July 2017, the ADB and Cantilan Bank launched its pilot project in the southern Philippines to demonstrate how cloud technology can unlock financial opportunities for the unbanked segments of the Filipino population. Oradian is the first Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) provider to deliver on ADB and BSP’s strategy. According to the World Bank, roughly 1.7 billion individuals still lack access to basic banking services. Yet rapid technological advancement across frontier markets, such as digital and mobile technologies, has incited a host of visionary financial institutions to implement cloud-based software to help proliferate basic banking services.

Oradian partners with these institutions providing a world-class technology toolset and financial best-practice models. By moving their services into the cloud, Cantilan Bank is now in a stronger position to serve remote client and help solve the challenge of financial inclusion. BSP Governor Nestor Espenilla Jr. said: “The pioneering introduction of cloud banking in the Philippines is a key moment in solving the challenges of financial inclusion. Cloud technology that meets the requirements of the BSP’s Circular 808 is enhancing the competitiveness of rural banks and enabling them to provide affordable, high quality financial services.” “This pilot is a success in that we are enabling more individuals in remote and rural areas of the Philippines to access digital financial services, and because our collective efforts will result in boosting global financial inclusion.” said Lotte Schou-Zibell, Chief of Finance Sector Group at ADB.

Kelly Hattel, Senior Financial Sector Specialist, Southeast Asia Department of ADB added, “Increasing the capacity of financial service providers is a key objective of ADB’s Inclusive Finance Development Program. We want to leverage the success of this pilot to encourage other financial institutions to look at how technology can be used to strengthen their core operations, better meet the needs of their clients through digital products and services and grow their outreach especially in rural areas to the previously unbanked throughout the Philippines.” 

According to Melchor Plabasan, Officer-In-Charge of Technology Risk and Innovation Supervision Department (TRISD) at the BSP, “As the regulator of many financial institutions and an advocate of responsible digital innovation, we recognise the opportunities that cloud-based technology can create. We recommend others in emerging markets to adopt digitisation strategies that will revolutionise financial services and deepen financial inclusion.”

In collaboration with Cantilan Bank, Oradian delivered its cloud-based core banking system, technical training and global best practice to all of Cantilan Bank’s 44 branches across 12 provinces in the rural regions of Mindanao and Visayas. With Oradian’s services, Cantilan Bank has extended its reach beyond its brick and mortar branches through digital financial services.

According to Tanya Hotchkiss, Cantilan Bank’s Executive Vice President, “We are committed to our mission of financial inclusion in the Philippines. Cloud technology is proving to fast-track our ability to serve more unbanked individuals throughout Mindanao.”

Cantilan Bank is reaping the business benefits of improved efficiency and informed decision-making with real-time data access. Oradian’s cloud-based banking system offers enhanced security and enables growth without the burden of incremental costs associated with on-premise systems. Banks moving their services into the cloud are in a better position to serve their most remote clients.

“We worked closely with Cantilan Bank to digitise their operations and processes and enable their business to run on one platform – across all branches. Regulatory reporting is simplified and
more efficient with the dynamic reporting platform. Now that all Cantilan Bank’s processes and data are consolidated, they can focus more resources on their clients and serving their needs. One of the most important aspects of Cantilan Bank using Instafin is the improved strategic decision- making capability enabled by the data that is readily available in real time.” stated Julian Oehrlein, Head of Product and Co-Founder of Oradian.

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