SME Bank of the Year: Bancolombia

SME Bank of the Year: Bancolombia

Colombia is home to some 3 million small- and medium-sized enterprises, and Bancolombia banks around half of them. In a sign of its focus on SMEs, the bank holds a 36% market share of Colombia’s SME loans.

Competition is heating up to provide banking services to this critical sector of Colombia’s economy, but Bancolombia continued to show its market leadership by rolling out new products, growing its total SME deposits by 12% from May 2018 to May 2019, and increasing its net earnings by 10% over the previous year.

Bancolombia has revamped its approach, moving beyond a client segmentation that focused on big, medium and small companies to a more detailed segmentation that includes sector, transactional details and other information. The approach is helping the bank to better tailor new products.

Last year, Bancolombia unveiled a new platform designed to offer improved services to SMEs. The platform includes a broad range of sector data and news and offers services ranging from payroll to consulting and digital marketing.

The bank also specifically targets startups, attracting clients from the edtech, agrotech, fintech and e-commerce sectors.

In January, Bancolombia announced it had formed a partnership with MercadoPago, the payments unit of the Argentina-based e-commerce retailer MercadoLibre, aimed at helping the bank’s SME clients process online payments.