Financial institution expertise

By working together with our clients to understand their unique contexts by applying our industry expertise and experience, Genesis delivers practical and valuable advisory services across the financial sector.

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Expertise Areas

Corporate and investment banking

The corporate and business banking market offers high returns for financial institutions that can navigate the industry adeptly and seize opportunities when they arise. Genesis is uniquely positioned to assist companies in Africa and the Middle East to drive growth and profitability.

We have worked with some of the largest banking firms across Africa to develop and evolve their corporate and investment banking strategies. Our work in this sector has included country and sector opportunity analyses, and cost allocation model design and implementation.

A comprehensive understanding of the market is critical for any bank’s corporate and investment banking division when it is aiming to maximise profits. We provide in-depth market insights and intelligence needed to overcome information asymmetries and the means to obtain a greater understanding of the legal and regulatory framework, all of which are necessary in order to drive business growth. We have extensive experience in our team spanning the entire product set and value chain of corporate and investment banking.

Business banking

We help business-banking departments achieve growth targets and/or improve profitability by identifying specific opportunities across their respective customer segments, product offerings, operating models and value propositions.

Drawing on 10 years of experience and the knowledge base of a team that is specialised in financial services, Genesis provides in-depth market insights, the intelligence needed to overcome information asymmetries and the means to obtain a greater understanding of the legal and regulatory framework, all of which are necessary in order to drive business growth.

Banks in emerging markets are also uniquely positioned to take advantage of new technologies and distribution channels such as mobile banking platforms and remittance transfers, and Genesis helps them to capitalise on their unique position in the market. Finally, the ever-changing nature of the legal and regulatory framework for financial services means that advisory teams need to immediately understand the implications of any regulatory changes, and Genesis is able to help businesses to adjust existing strategies or to develop new ones in response to them.

Retail banking

The emerging markets serviced by Genesis in Africa and the Middle East have grown rapidly over the past 10 years and the number of people able to afford banking services has grown at an even faster rate.

However, as many former commercial banks have found to their expense, retail banking is a fundamentally different business. Profits in the retail segment lie in detailed attention to the development and articulation of a compelling customer value proposition, the implementation of this across the business, the development of appropriate market positioning statements, the pricing of products and services, and the attention to the detail of customer behaviour.

Our far-reaching experience in the banking sector of emerging markets enables us to assist businesses in the development of optimal market segmentations, risk assessment criteria and value propositions that capture the full potential of their markets. Further, recognising the increasing value that small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) hold for financial institutions, Genesis Analytics is able to help financial institutions overcome the problems associated with information shortages for SMEs, as well as to understand the linkages that connect personal banking with business banking for small-business owners.

 In order to manage this level of detail, successful retail banks need organisational structures that place data analytics at the heart of the organisation. This process involves optimising the provision and use of alternative channels and the diligent management of the increased complexity in their organisation in order to present a consistent voice to the customer, regardless of channel preferences. Providing a compelling and consistent multi-channel experience for customers based on pricing strategies by customer, segment and channel drives scale economies and consolidation in retail banking.

 In order to be successful in increasingly competitive retail markets, providers need to define a clear value proposition that outlines the complete range of benefits and experiences a customer can expect to receive from the institution, and which the bank aims to create through its operational activities. Value proposition development involves a detailed analysis of the company's unique capabilities and its relation to the characteristics of the external market, including customers, other products, competitors and pricing.

 This analysis is at the heart of how Genesis tackles the challenges of retail banking, and of improving the performance of the retail operations of client banks.

Capital markets

We have also worked with institutions, such as stock exchanges, to develop strategies for growth and in response to regulatory changes. Furthermore, we have worked with Development Finance Institutions and other donor organisations to deepen and develop capital markets in order to promote an environment for sustained economic growth.

Payments

There has been a payments revolution in the past decade, with a veritable explosion in the number and type of cards issued, and in the number of mobile payment and near-field communication initiatives piloted and deployed. Banks, mobile network operators, microfinance institutions, card ‘associations’, payment service providers and governments all have to define and carve out a role for themselves in this rapidly changing environment. Critically, these stakeholders need to optimise performance in the current, largely cash-dominated environment, while also ensuring that they are well placed for the longer-term decline in paper-based payment instruments.

In advising these various stakeholders, Genesis Analytics stresses the importance of inter-operability in increasing efficiency, and advises clients to leverage off existing industry infrastructure wherever possible. While obviously important, it is increasingly difficult to distinguish an offering based on technology and functionality. As such, the added value related to the core offering in terms of pricing, level of service, distribution, alignment of incentives, communication and simplicity, is of increasing importance in the development of an integrated, attractive and successful customer value proposition.

Genesis assists various stakeholders in the sector to develop distinct payment strategies and compelling value propositions and identifies the ‘what, where and how’ of participation in emerging channels.

Genesis has worked with banks and mobile network operators (MNOs) to understand customer behaviour and the specific market circumstances in which mobile payment solutions have succeeded. We continue to advise a number of clients on how to participate in this channel and on the selection of appropriate products and business models.

Cross-border money transfers are an equally important area of opportunity for banks and financial service providers. The importance of money transfers is increasingly recognised by public authorities, and ensuring an appropriate regulatory regime is a key area of focus. Genesis has worked with a range of donors and financial service providers to study the dynamics of different money-transfer corridors and to identify emerging money transfer business opportunities.

Insurance and asset management

Genesis advises insurance and asset management firms on strategy, market development and regulatory impact assessment.

Through our work with FinMark Trust in particular, we have been actively involved in exploring the potential for micro-insurance. We have also worked with insurance companies and investors to explore the potential of mobile technologies as a channel to expand the distribution of insurance products across those African markets where mobile penetration is much higher than the penetration of banking products.

We have worked extensively with insurance firms aiming to invest in Africa in order to assess market potential and the constraints to insurance penetration. These constraints often stem from inadequate regulation and a reliance on expensive traditional distribution channels. We have also explored the potential for Islamic insurance, or takaful, in a number of markets.

Regulators are increasingly focusing on improving the regulation in many aspects of the insurance and asset management businesses, from distribution to capital management and the fee structures of complex products. We work with clients and regulators to ensure that policy reform is appropriate, and to enable businesses to adjust to changes in regulation.

Projects

New sustainability approach for big four bank

Project name:
A new sustainability approach for a big four bank

Service:
Shared value

Sector:
Financial Services

Area of Expertise:
Shared value and inclusive business strategy

Client:
Confidential

Date:
2016

Country:
South Africa


Genesis was employed by one of the big four banks in South Africa to review its sustainability strategy after its new head of sustainability concluded that the bank’s existing approach was too inward looking, environmentally focused and compliance driven.

We helped the client to devise a new sustainability strategy rooted in a shared-value approach. 

The bank recognised that socio-economic and environmental challenges in developing markets represented new growth opportunities for its suite of products. 

The new approach has been endorsed by the bank’s leadership and has led to a restructuring of the sustainability unit. 

Strategic plan for a large Tanzanian financial institution

Project name:
Medium-term strategic plan for a large Tanzanian financial institution

Service:
Strategy
Financial institution expertise

Sector:
Financial Services

Area of Expertise:
Retail banking
Corporate and investment banking
Business banking

Client:
A large Tanzanian commercial bank

Date:
2015

Country:
Tanzania


Genesis was commissioned by a large Tanzanian financial institution to conduct a market opportunity analysis and strategic review of its business with a view to defining its medium-term strategy through to 2020. 

A four-step looped strategy framework was adopted as the approach and involved defining the bank’s objectives, outlining the market opportunity, developing the strategy and ending off by aligning the overarching operating model. 

The first step involved extensive workshops with the management team to outline the objectives of the institution through to 2020. The opportunity analysis focused on understanding the institution's current focus and target market, after which we studied the Tanzanian market to outline the various opportunities that would exist going forward. 

With an understanding of what the future opportunities would be, a strategy for the institution was developed outlining the key capability improvements that would be required. The final step involved the Genesis team developing an implementation plan for the institution to follow with a set of initiatives for the short, medium and longer term.

The outcome of the engagement concluded with the Genesis team presenting the new medium-term strategy to the institution’s management team and finally the board. With board approval, the strategy is in the process of being implemented.

Strategy for financial inclusion unit of Ghanaian bank

Project name:
Strategy for the financial inclusion unit of a major Ghanaian bank

Service:
Strategy
Financial inclusion
Market systems development

Sector:
Financial Services

Area of Expertise:
Retail banking

Client:
Financial Sector Development Programme Africa (FSD Africa)

Date:
2014

Country:
Ghana


Our purpose was to assist a leading Ghanaian bank's Financial Inclusion Unit (FIU) to deliver on its overarching goal of having five million active accounts by 2018, and to identify ‘capability’ gaps that could potentially be supported by FSD Africa. The analysis involved a market opportunity analysis and internal capability assessment.

While it was clear that the goal was a stretch target, the analysis gave the initiative a green/amber light because, technically, the opportunity did exist and the bank had the three key advantages: it was the first mover in the mass market, it was given special dispensation by the central bank to run an agent network (the only bank in the market) and mobile-money solutions had not yet taken off.

Capability wise, however, the analysis highlighted numerous concerns. The operating model was not scalable (i.e. too many manual processes) and, structurally, the division was set up as a special project with duplicated main-bank functions (such as operations and IT) which substantially increased costs. Furthermore, a poor decision had been made about its IT platforms, i.e. a separate core-banking system had been built, which meant that customers from this segment could not interact with the main bank and vice versa.

The project concluded with the creation of a new organisational structure of a retail banking value chain continuum that eliminated the initial silo nature of the organisation. The business case investigation revealed key issues in terms of sales performances, card functionality and pricing. Together with overall process and systems problems, these formed the foundation for a list of key activities that would need to be undertaken for the unit to improve performance and achieve its goals. These key initiatives were then workshopped with key stakeholders in order to gain consensus and rank them in terms of priority. The bank decided to implement all of our recommendations.

Bank gets more customers to go mobile

Project name:
Bank gets more customers to go mobile

Service:
Strategy
Financial institution expertise

Sector:
Financial Services

Area of Expertise:
Retail banking

Client:
A large Pan-African bank

Date:
2014

Country:
South Africa


A large Pan-African bank commissioned Genesis to conduct an analysis of the mobile-banking market in South Africa and to craft initiatives to drive rapid mobile adoption, allowing it to achieve aggressive targets set by the executive.

The goal of the project was to develop a clear understanding of the addressable market for mobile-banking applications. In order to do this, the bank’s user base was profiled using the data capabilities of Genesis's former internal analytics specialists, Moxon Solutions. This allowed the bank to identify the characteristics of early adopters, which ultimately led to targeted adoption initiatives in the marketing and channel space.

At the conclusion of the project, the Genesis team was instrumental in setting up a steering committee to bring together various stakeholder groups, all of whom wished to migrate customers from fairly expensive channels, such as branches, to fairly inexpensive channels, such as a mobile-banking app or internet banking.

The client managed to reach the target of one million customers seven months before it had expected to.

Merger creates one of Ghana’s biggest banks

Project name:
Merger creates one of Ghana’s biggest banks

Service:
Strategy
Financial institution expertise

Sector:
Financial Services

Area of Expertise:
Retail banking
Business banking
Corporate and investment banking

Client:
One of the largest Ghanaian banks

Date:
2014

Country:
Ghana


Genesis was contracted as an external adviser in the merger process between one of the largest local banks in Ghana and an SME finance provider. Genesis was tasked with supporting the integration of two very different companies by helping them to align and optimise their operating model as they began working together.

Genesis provided the firms with an integration framework as well as aided them in defining their thoughts on strategy, given the changing macroeconomic environment in Ghana over 2014. This intervention involved extensive interviews, executive committee meetings as well as a detailed workshop focusing and defining a path forward. The outcomes of the integration were highlighted to the workshop participants. The participants were asked to think of their work streams in the context of the most important key path-dependent outcomes to which they should align their tasks towards integration. This was then used as an overarching mechanism to track interrelated work and ensure a full understanding of the goals of the integration process. This streamlining activity helped the two firms understand their new united objective

The integration ensured that the new bank consolidated its position as number six in the market in terms of asset book, but with one of the largest networks (80 branches, 300 agencies and 96 ATMs) and customer base of over 700 000. The integration was also deemed a success as the new bank was able to retain the majority of the staff and functions from both previous organisations.

The benefits of the merger continue to be realised with the bank continuing to scale the rankings. It is no longer labelled as one of the largest local banks in Ghana, but rather one of the largest banks in Ghana.

Meet the Team

Areas of Service Expertise

  • Corporate and investment banking
  • Business banking
  • Retail banking
  • Capital markets
  • Payments
  • Insurance and asset management

Projects

Project

New sustainability approach for big four bank

Genesis was employed by one of the big four banks in South Africa to review its sustainability strategy after its new head of sustainability concluded that the bank’s existing approach was too inward looking, environmentally focused and compliance driven.

View Project
Project

Strategic plan for a large Tanzanian financial institution

Genesis was commissioned by a large Tanzanian financial institution to conduct a market opportunity analysis and strategic review of its business with a view to defining its medium-term strategy through to 2020. 

View Project

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Leading the team

Richard Ketley

Director and Managing Partner (Financial Services Strategy)

Richard Ketley
Director and Managing Partner (Financial Services Strategy)
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Chidinma Lawanson

Regional Lead Consultant (Nigeria)

Chidinma Lawanson
Regional Lead Consultant (Nigeria)
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Mauro Mela

Principal (Financial Services Strategy)

Mauro Mela
Principal (Financial Services Strategy)
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Bavani Naidoo

Principal

Bavani Naidoo
Principal
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Vlad Lakčević

Manager

Vlad Lakčević
Manager
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