Providing Financial Access with Good Rates, Accessible PaymentsWed, 11/01/2017 - 11:40
Q: Bancomext is present in a number of sectors. What determines the bank’s involvement and what opportunities does it look for?
A: The bank is an important player in sectors where currencies play a central role and in those that involve foreign trade and the global chaining of production processes. In this sense, Bancomext’s main areas of opportunity are tourism, industrial warehouses and the energy sector. However, this does not mean that we neglect the transportation sector, which includes the automotive and aerospace industries and other segments such as metal-mechanics, electronics and telecoms.
Q: How does the bank view the frequent increases in Mexican interest rates?
A: The interesting part of Bancomext’s portfolio is that we can access external financing. In 2015, we placed debt certificates totaling US$1 billion. In 2016, we placed certificates worth US$700 million, which earned the recognition of “Deal of the Year” by the World Finance magazine. We just placed certificates in Mexico totaling MX$7 billion in three and seven-year periods. Interest rates have risen but margins have narrowed. We operate efficiently and translate this efficiency to the client. We are enjoying better international rates and opportunities and because of this, a significant number of the rates we offer have not been affected.
Q: What opportunities does the creation of Special Economic Zones (ZEEs) offer Bancomext?
A: As we are leaders in the financing of industrial warehouses, we see a significant degree of interest in these projects and. We also see opportunities to support the importation of needed machinery. Since we work with export trading agencies we can provide structured support in this regard all around the world.
Q: Bancomext also targets the tourism sector. What has been the reception and impact of the Mejora tu Hotel program?
A: Mejora tu Hotel encompasses the entire spectrum of the tourism industry. This means that we can provide loans to small hotels that have two or three stars. As a result, some hotels have transformed from traditional small brands to establishments that comply with international standards, which helps them increase their occupancy rates from 30-40 percent to 70 percent. However, our offering is not restricted to small hotels. We support large hotels that want to expand their operations and we also participate in large complexes with as many as 6,000 rooms. Tourism is not only about hotels. It also includes the airlines and infrastructure that support the growth of this sector, such as the Cross Border Xpress in Tijuana (CBX).
Q: How is Bancomext collaborating with Mexican companies to reap the benefits and opportunities related to Industry 4.0 (I4.0)?
A: It is important to note that Mexico will be the first country with the capacity to fully insert itself into the I4.0 trend. We will be the first country to have a shared network that will provide a substantial percentage of the population with access to the 4G network and with enough spectrum to allow communication in a more efficient and economical manner. The Internet of Things (IoT) will allow for a more dynamic communication than what we are used to. In industries, either through Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) or through the use of specific communication tools, we will see containers located at different ports communicating, arranging to be delivered at the same time, and the buyer will be able to access all this information with just one click. We already have the hardware and the software components but this is all useless if we do not have the expertise to produce. In this regard, we already have clusters with the necessary manufacturing knowledge. Ricardo Hausmann, Director of the Harvard Center for International Development, says that Mexico has the possibilities and processes to assemble cars, planes and medical devices. We only need to connect the talent.