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Investing and developing: responsibility at the local level

Interview with Dominique Lefebvre, Chairman of FNCA and Crédit Agricole S.A., and Raphaël Appert, First Deputy Chairman of FNCA and Deputy Chairman of Crédit Agricole S.A.

The Regional Banks unveiled their ambitions for the next ten years in Angers on 10 December. How is this related to the Group Project?

The story begins at the end of 2018, when senior executives spent time thinking together about the Group’s long-term strategic priorities, which in turn helped shape our raison d’être (“Working every day in the interest of our customers and society”), the Group Project and the Regional Banks’ ten-year ambitions.

These ten-year ambitions are thus structurally very consistent with and closely related to the Group Project and its by now very well known sub-projects: the Customer Project, the Human-Centric Project and the Societal Project. These ambitions represent the Regional Banks’ commitments for the next ten years, with the aim of realising the full potential of our full-service regional banking model – a model within which 39 autonomous Regional Banks with a common destiny are supported by the Group in its key areas of expertise.

 

What are these long-term priorities?

Our highly effective collective of 39 Regional Banks has built a particularly high-performing model, delivering financial performance, market share, solvency and risk management, growing customer satisfaction, and sustainability. This has not happened all by itself: it is mainly the product of efforts by men and women – entrepreneurial people who have devoted themselves to the task. Today, we are fully embracing and expanding upon this human dimension. Our ambition is to build businesses scaled for innovation and change, serving customers at the local level, that value engaged employees and entrepreneurial managers.

Creating meaning, developing autonomy and empowering all stakeholders are the keys to our future success.

 

What does this strategy consist of?

At heart, our project is about two things: investing and developing. This applies to people, the organisation and technology. And we have already begun: over the past three years, the Regional Banks have invested €2 billion in transforming branches and regional offices, as well as in innovative developments like Villages by CA.

We will be putting the Human Project at the heart of our ambitions. Our first goal will be to increase accountability in customer relationships, with a target of 90% of decisions being made autonomously as close to customers as possible.

We will continue to invest around €4 billion a year in our IT and digital systems. Lastly, we will be investing in our business lines with the aim of being the leader in personal protection within our regions by becoming the leading property and casualty insurer by 2030.

We also have serious ambitions in real estate and in the business, corporate and day-to-day banking markets. Finally, we also aim to move into new areas like the usage economy, data-driven services and digital trusted third parties, as well as building relationships that help boost local economies.

This development strategy is designed to accentuate the differentiating features of our model. It is built on a highly influential Customer Project, an ambition to break new ground in our areas for development and a desire to strengthen the positioning of our cooperative businesses in local economies.

 

How will we measure progress against these ambitions?

We are putting in place five strategic indicators to help us visualise our progress.

We want to be the favourite bank among all customers, ranked first on the CRI.

We also intend to be number one for net new main relationships gained.

We want to be France’s favourite financial services employer, ranked first on the ERI.

We want to be recognised for our actions on societal issues in our regions, and are creating a societal engagement index.

And we will remain financially strong, ensuring that we have enough Tier 1 capital to meet regulatory requirements.

 

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