Magazine article American Banker

Spain's Bankinter Diffuses Web Tech

Magazine article American Banker

Spain's Bankinter Diffuses Web Tech

Article excerpt

Bankinter, Spain's fourth-largest bank, is trying to infuse Internet technology throughout its enterprise in an effort dubbed e-Bankinter.

By making 300 types of transaction available through the Internet, Bankinter has reduced transaction volume in its 102 branches to 38% of the total, from 82% in 1993. Its BKNet Internet banking service now handles 27% of Bankinter's transactions.

Nearly 80,000 of Bankinter's roughly 150,000 retail customers do three or more online transactions a month. They can execute Internet transactions related to loans, deposits, savings and credit accounts, bill payments, and investments in 25 stock markets worldwide. The $18 billion-asset Bankinter was the first Spanish financial company to offer online stock trading and online tax payments when it started Internet services in 1997.

Bankinter is purposely not following the lead of banks in the United States or United Kingdom that have built separately branded banks on the Internet. Nor does it want to treat the Internet as merely a channel.

"We have chosen a third way, which is to put the entire bank at the service of the new opportunity" presented by the Internet, said a Bankinter spokesman in Madrid. "This means transforming the bank and switching it to the age of the Internet."

Bankinter said it plans to introduce banking by mobile phone this year and also is investigating interactive and digital television and personal digital assistants. Other aspects of the bank's electronic business strategy include the launching of an electronic payments service using the Secure Electronic Transaction protocol. …

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