Distribution of insurance via the banking channel is an important element of the PZU Group’s business model. Cooperation with the banking segment forms an additional plane for PZU to build lasting client relations at every stage of their personal and professional development.
PZU’s activity is based mainly on the area of bancassurance, assurbanking and cost synergies in cooperation with banks from the PZU Group: Alior Bank (in PZU Group since 2015) and Bank Pekao (in PZU Group since 2017) and distribution of bancassurance insurance products through banks outside the Group.
The overriding objective of the cooperation is to reach the largest number of clients using multiple distribution channels and provide insurance cover to bank clients.
In 2020, the PZU Group attained its strategic objective for 2017-2020 by recording PLN 1 billion of premium from the cooperation with Bank Pekao and Alior Bank. Due to the uniqueness of the banking distribution channel and the COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 entailed dynamic development of remote sales channels.
Bank Pekao is one of the largest financial institutions in Central and Eastern Europe and one of biggest universal banks in Poland. Thanks to the second largest branch network, the bank serves approx. 5.5 million retail clients. As the country’s leading corporate bank it provides services to one out of two corporations in Poland. The status of a universal bank relies on the leading market position in private banking, asset management and brokerage activity. The Bank offers all financial services available in Poland to individual and institutional clients. The group comprises over a dozen companies which are national leaders in the area of brokerage services, leasing, factoring, financial investment and transaction advisory services.
In accordance with the strategy for 2018-2020“Strength of the Polish Bison”, the bank’s priorities are: smart growth, digital and operational transformation, and building longterm relationships with clients based on an integrated service model and professional operation designed to strengthen the position as one of the biggest and most recognizable banks in Poland.
As of the beginning of 2021 Bank Pekao acquired, pursuant to an administrative decision, the enterprise and the liabilities of Idea Bank, with exclusions specified in the decision. The acquisition meant that Pekao increased the scale of business and the Micro and SME client base, which are the strategic segments for Bank Pekao’s development.
Bank Pekao is a universal bank offering financial services to individual and institutional clients. A broad product offering, innovative solutions and individual approach provide clients with comprehensive financial service. An integrated service model, in turn, guarantees the highest quality of services, as well as their optimum alignment with the changing needs.
The bank’s business model is based on a segmentation of clients into the following areas:
The bank’s customers can use a broad network of branches and ATMs, which provides convenient access throughout Poland, as well as a professional call center and a competitive Internet banking and mobile banking platform for individual and corporate clients, and for small and micro businesses.
As at 31 December 2020, the bank had 713 own branches and 1,592 own ATMs. The bank maintained 6,531.0 thousand current accounts in PLN, 401.3 thousand mortgage loan accounts and 674.6 thousand Express Loan accounts.
In 2020, Bank Pekao consistently executed the digital transformation process, comprising initiatives focused on development of sales and improvement of the quality of service in the remote channels, automation and robotization of the processes and enriching the offering to include stateof-the-art digital services. In the face of the dynamically accelerating changes in the area of client behaviors and needs triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic, a number of projects in the digitization area were accelerated to secure the continuity of cooperation with client in the sanitary regime environment. In Q2 2020, the bank deployed a new PeoPay mobile banking app. Its modern graphic design improves navigation and ease of use. The interface developed on the basis of the experience and research with clients provides very convenient access to accounts and products and facilitates daily mobile banking. In the new PeoPay users may check their account balance even before logging in. After entering the app they gain access to all their products and other services offered by the bank. The PeoPay app supports opening an “account with a selfie” both to retail and corporate clients. Thanks to it, clients may easily and conveniently order a transfer to any account, make all other payments, top up their phone, pay contactless with their phone and open a deposit. The app offers a number of innovative solutions such as, for example:
In June 2020, the bank released the PeoPay KIDS app developed specifically for children aged between 6 and 13. The app lets children learn in an easy and accessible manner how to save up and manage their money. Children may also obtain their own PeoPay KIDS payment card to let them make purchases in stores and withdraw cash – the transaction limit on the card is set by the parent. The app also enables the user to perform simple operations, such as transfers from the Mega Beneficial Account or top-ups of pre-paid phone cards. PeoPay KIDS is linked to the parent panel in the PeoPay app and Pekao24 online banking. All transactions require a parent’s authorization.
Since mid-April 2020, the new Pekao24 platform has been available to the bank’s clients. The new platform features not only a modern and accessible graphical presentation of the interface, but also improves user experience and enables optimized and simplified processes that respond to the needs of the user community, in particular by enabling them to manage their finances without leaving home. The new functionalities in the platform were made available both to retail clients and to micro clients and small businesses using Pekao24.
Bank Pekao launched authentication of clients who have the digital banking identity PekaoID using the mojeID service (PekaoID) and the Trusted Profile using the so-called eIDAS National Junction, i.e. an administrative HUB, to which already over 100 authorities, including state administration bodies, are connected. Thanks to it, the utilization of the commercial mojeID (PekaoID) service in public administration was expanded. Using a single tool the bank’s clients may authenticate their ID in the platforms of both commercial and public entities. In 2020, the number of clients using Pekao exceeded 230 thousand.
In addition, the bank launched the Autopay service thanks to which selected motorway sections can be paid for automatically, without the need to wait in the lines at the toll gates. The service can be activated from the PeoPay app and the Pekao24 online banking platform.
In December 2020, the bank made the open banking functionality available in the Pekao24 platform and in the PeoPay app. Thanks to the service, after logging into the PeoPay service or the PeoPay app, the account holders in different banks may check the balances and transaction history on PLN, FX and savings accounts, and the credit card accounts and order local and foreign transfers.
In mid-2020 Bank Pekao launched new sales processes in the new Pekao24 service and the PeoPay mobile application, with new functionalities for the clients. The bank launched a new process “Halo” supporting remote sale of cash loans, overdraft limits and credit cards remotely during a phone call, both by a Pekao Direct consultant and a relationship manager in a branch, with acceptance of the documents and the loan agreement in the Pekao24 transaction service or the PeoPay app. The new solutions provide clients with a personalized tool allowing them to finance their needs without the need to visit a branch.
Alior Bank is a universal deposit and credit bank, providing services to natural persons, legal persons and other domestic and foreign entities. The bank’s core business comprises maintaining bank accounts, granting cash loans, issuing bank securities and purchase and sale of foreign currencies. The bank also conducts brokerage activity, provides financial advisory and intermediation services, arranges corporate bond issues and provides other financial services. In its operations, Alior Bank combines the principles of traditional banking with innovative solutions and consequently it sets new trends in financial services and consistently strengthens its market position.
The business objectives of Alior Bank’s strategy include, among others, facilitating everyday activities for clients, thanks to integration of banking and non-banking services, delivered both by Alior Bank and by the bank’s partners.
The banking world is changing rapidly. Digital banking accompanies Alior Bank’s clients on a daily basis and the services offered go beyond managing home or company finances. They include purchase of insurance, selection of health care, keeping books of account, easy payments “in the background”. Clients’ trust, listening to their expectations combined with Alior Bank’s technological potential yields unprecedented convenience, new possibilities and tailor-making to individual needs – at a much higher level than in traditional banks. Further expansion of Alior Bank’s technological potential, new business solutions and maintaining stable, long-term relations with clients are the bank’s development foundations.
The bank’s operations are conducted by various divisions that offer specific products and services earmarked for specific market segments. The Bank does business in three segments:
As at 31 December 2020, Alior Bank catered to 4.2 million retail clients.
In the first half of 2020 the bank implemented modern behavioral segmentation, grouping and describing the portfolio of retail clients actively using banking services. In the second half of the year the bank also implemented segmentation of retail clients who, in cooperation with Alior Bank, finance their installment purchases, whereas Alior Bank is not the bank of their first choice.
Both segmentations are based on multiple dimensions of the data in the bank’s possession, associated with the clients’ products, lifecycle, banking method, level of wealth and modernity. Additionally, based on an analysis of the transaction rates and purchase baskets, the segmentation was supplemented by the clients’ interests and the socalled „life style” criteria. The segmentations provide information about the clients’ values, expectations, attitudes and service and product needs. There are six segments of clients actively cooperating (banking) with the bank, and six segments of consumer finance (installment purchase) clients. The segmentations make it possible to adapt the communication, contact channels, product packages and personalized value added services, which supplement the traditional functionalities of the products and services offered by the bank. The segmentation dedicated to consumer finance clients makes it possible to improve the quality and effectiveness of sales communication, in which the bank offers to installment clients also other, professional banking products.
In addition to the behavioral segmentation, the bank divides its retail clients in the following operating segments:
This segmentation can be seen also in the structure of the sales network which comprises specialized sales units – universal, premium and private banking branches.
Alior Bank has a comprehensive and contemporary offer for business clients in all the segments: micro, small and medium and corporate. As at the end of 2020, the bank serviced nearly 240 thousand business clients, and the total credit exposure reached PLN 19.7 billion. The number of sold business payment cards in 2020 exceeded 38 thousand. In 2020 the business client segment generated revenues of PLN 1.15 billion.
At the end of 2020 the bank catered to over 200 thousand micro businesses. Despite the restrictions associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, the bank actively acquired new clients, using online sales channels, while continuing full service in the bank outlets. In 2020, 25,9 micro businesses opened accounts in Alior Bank.
Alior Bank conducts its treasury activity, among others, in the following areas:
At the end of 2020, Alior Bank had 674 outlets (180 traditional branches, 7 private banking branches, 13 corporate centers and 474 partner centers). The bank’s products were also offered in the chain of 10 mortgage centers and a network of roughly 3 thousand intermediaries.
Alior Bank’s traditional branches are located throughout Poland, in particular in cities with more than 50 thousand residents, offering the full range of the bank’s products and services. Partner centers on the other hand are located in smaller towns and in selected locations in Poland’s major cities, offering a broad range of services and deposit and credit products for retail and business customers. Cooperation between the bank and its partner centers is based on an outsourcing agency agreement. Agents provide exclusive agency services to the bank in respect to the distribution of products. These services are provided in locations owned or leased by agents approved by the bank. The bank’s products are offered in financial intermediary chains, such as Expander, Open Finance, Dom Kredytowy Notus, Fines and others, whose offering focuses mainly on mortgage loans and cash loans.
Alior Bank also uses distribution channels based on a modern IT platform incorporating: online banking, mobile banking, call centers and the DRONN technology. Using the Internet, the bank makes it possible to enter into agreements for: savings and checking accounts, currency accounts, savings accounts, deposits, debit cards and brokerage accounts. These channels are also used to accept applications for credit products: cash loans, credit cards, overdraft limits and mortgage loans. Using the Internet, the bank also offers installment loans in an online process and offers services of a currency exchange office.
In accordance with the strategic priorities, Alior Bank focuses on optimization of the existing and introduction of new solutions in online and mobile banking.
In 2020, the bank focused on solutions which provided clients with online access to products and services, without the need to visit branches. Among the projects, the solutions supporting remote verification of identity were of key importance. This is an area that was being developed as a priority, to provide clients with convenient, fast and safe access to Alior Bank’s offering, at any time and in any place, also in the unique conditions created by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The first big project in 2020 of this category was the investment in the Autenti fintech. Alior Bank with BNP Paribas and PKO Bank Polski jointly invested in a Polish fintech offering a platform for electronic signing of agreements and digital document circulation. The project enables clients to use the latest solutions available in the market.
Remote client service is a priority not only in the bank’s strategy but also in the new reality created by the COVID-19 pandemic. In Q1 2020, Alior Bank implemented a new client identity verification method, without the need to visit a branch. FOTO ID is a technology which opens new sales opportunities in remote channels. Thanks to it, the identity verification process was significantly accelerated – the whole process takes no more than 5 minutes. At the same time, the solution is intuitive and does not require advanced digital skills.
The next effort focused on remote client identification was the cooperation with Polska Wytwórnia Papierów Wartościowych. One of the areas of cooperation is the use of an e-ID, which supports client identity verification without visiting a branch. Thanks to the eDo App, with an e-ID clients can confirm their personal data and may freely use Alior Bank’s products and services. The possibilities offered by this app already today are revolutionary in the market. Safe, remote identity confirmation or signing have become available to all Alior Bank clients. Thanks to the eDO App it is possible to prevent the practice of criminals using stolen or forged identity cards.
In 2020 the Alior Mobile app and the Alior Online platform went through a number of changes in terms of their appearance and handling of deposit and credit products, and received new functionalities.
In the Alior Mobile app, the login screen was modified, providing easier access to key functions, such as BLIK, fast connection with the hotline, the Ticket service and car parking, and launch of the fingerprint reader. An option was added supporting the purchase of electronic public transport tickets and payment for car parking in a number of Polish cities. Clients can buy tickets for busses, trams, metro or train for themselves and for their travel companions. Thinking about motorized clients, the bank introduced the Motorways functionality. The service supports automatic opening of a toll gate without stopping and is available in 3 language versions (Polish, English and Russian).
As part of optimization of online banking, among others, Alior Online added new items in the account details and expanded the functionality of adding a trusted browser through online banking. Thinking about clients with special needs, the possibility of ordering documents in the form of an audio recording or visual content, printout in the Braille alphabet or a document with a font size easy to read by persons with impaired vision was introduced.
In digital banking, the Open Banking was introduced, thanks to which clients may use Alior Online and Alior Mobile to order transfers from other banks. The solution is based on the Payment Initiation Service (PIS). As part of the AIS (Account Information Service) consent given, Alior Online was expanded by a section which enables the client to view his/her accounts in other banks and institutions.
RBL_ Innovation by Alior Bank
Alior Bank operates the RBL_ START program, in which fintechs start cooperation with the bank on the project path. Thanks to that, they have an opportunity to participate not only in workshops but also at the stages associated with building partnerships in the corporation, i.e. tests with clients, preparation of the business plan or security analysis. The program is prepared in such a way as to not only support startups at the early stage of development but also develop new ideas of existing companies and support foreign entities which are just starting operations in the Polish market.
By the end of May 2020, a new edition of the RBL_ START program “More than a banking app” was launched to support the implementation of Alior Bank’s business strategy. In the form of a challenge, new solutions and added services were sought to be offered to Alior Bank’s retail clients via the Alior Mobile app.
The PZU Group strives to create an ecosystem in which the overriding objective is to manage client relations skillfully by offering clients solutions in all venues accessible to clients. This will contribute to intensifying activities in strategic partnerships with companies operating on the Polish market, among others, telecommunication operators, power utilities, retail chains and airlines, regarding joint offering of non-life and life insurance to the clients of such institutions.
In 2020, PZU continued to develop and strengthen cooperation with strategic partners: PLL LOT and Allegro.pl, while working on expanding and diversifying the product offering for clients.
In addition, within the framework of its strategic partnerships, PZU offers a number of insurance agreements to the business partners’ clients: