Tempted to scoff at the idea of “honour and humility among bankers”? You wouldn’t be alone… However, there is one bank that’s trying hard to change the profile of banking through its own strong foundation of trust, respect, industry recognition and client wellbeing. Read on to find out what makes Nedbank Private Wealth so different from many other banks and so appropriate for expats looking for a service that takes the complexity out of expat banking.
Integrity at the heart of its business
“Since the financial crisis, the financial services world has been cruelly exposed. There have been a number of fundamental weaknesses in it but, by and large, what’s driven the market has been a frenzy for sales and for growth,” says Greg Horton, Managing Director at Nedbank Private Wealth since 1996.
“I think that’s the fundamental difference between Nedbank Private Wealth and many other players in the same market; we never lost sight of what we’re all about. We’re here to serve our clients, we’re not here to serve ourselves.“
No incentives to sell banking products
From its offices around the world, Nedbank Private Wealth offers high-net-worth-individuals (HNWIs) a range of private banking, investment and other financial services. It has never been involved in mis-selling or incurred any regulatory penalty and, crucially, it’s never incentivised its staff to sell specific products. One of its guiding principles is to offer objective, impartial advice.
20 years of trust and respect
“About 20 years ago, I was a bit bruised from my experiences with banks, generally,” says Katarina, a private client at Nedbank Private Wealth for 20 years. When Katarina first met with the bank, they wouldn’t take her money. Katarina explains, “They said until you know what you’re investing in, we don’t want you to invest. They never let me go somewhere I didn’t understand and they talk me through everything. And, more and more, I see that they put my needs before their corporation’s needs. So now there’s 20 years of trust and respect, I’d say…both ways.”
The company’s hard-earned reputation for integrity has proved an invaluable asset, helping it to win national and international awards with unparalleled consistency over many years. Among the 30-plus awards that the bank has won in the banking and personnel sectors, there are a few that really stand out because they shine a very powerful light on Nedbank Private Wealth’s commitment to people not just finance:
- WealthBriefing GCC Region Awards – Best Private Bank for Client Service 2016
- City of London Wealth Management Awards, Best UK Private Bank 2016
- 2017 Sunday Times Best 100 Small Companies to Work For listing for a 12th year. Nedbank Private Wealth received a special award in 2014 for the exceptional achievement of appearing on the list for ten consecutive years, and continued to do so in 2016 and 2017. It was one of only three companies across the UK, and the only financial services company, to have attained such an unbroken run of achievement.
- The Gold status from Investors in People (IIP), the highest level of accreditation awarded, placing the company in the top seven percent of IIP-accredited organisations across the UK.
Complexity made easy
Nedbank Private Wealth is committed to offering its clients a range of innovative solutions and one of these is its Focus service. Focus combines international, multi-currency banking with other services such as lending, foreign exchange, investments and pensions.
“We developed Focus to bring the first banking and investment account to the European market. And that means that a client has the ability to see both their banking and their investment accounts in one place, with the added convenience of accessing that from anywhere in the world online, and giving access to their advisors or their tax accountants,” says Robert Currie, Head of Private Banking in the UK.
The whole package of services is reported in one simple statement. It works whether an expat client wants simple day-to-day banking services or a broader wealth management proposition, wherever they are based in the world.
“I’ve got investments, a dollar account, a euro account and a sterling account. If you take the clearing banks, you have 15 statements coming through the letterbox like confetti,” says Terry, a private client with Nedbank Private Wealth. “You have to pull all of those statements together, whereas with my Nedbank Private Wealth Focus account, it’s all in one place. It makes complexity easy.“
Real people answer the phone…in three rings!
Nedbank Private Wealth is committed to answering 99 percent of calls within three rings and with a human voice. In today’s automated world, how amazing is it that your call will be answered personally by a real person at the bank, not at a call centre!
“You won’t find a call centre at Nedbank Private Wealth. Clients love the fact they are talking to real people at the end of the telephone, people who genuinely care about meeting their needs and put their needs at the heart of everything they do,” says Lynn Kelly, Senior Training and Development Executive at Nedbank Private Wealth.
15 years of service award recognition
Thanks to this kind of service, Nedbank Private Wealth’s client satisfaction levels are among the top ten percent of all UK businesses. To make sure they stay that way, the company continues to make significant investments in recruiting and developing the best people. They’ve won the Gold Standard for Investors in People award and they have consistently been named as one of the Sunday Times ’100 Best Small Companies to Work For’.
Over 70 percent of the bank’s staff have been with the business for five years or more, which represents great continuity for their banking clients.
The golden reward… customer referrals
People are often reluctant to recommend a service to family and friends, unless it really outperforms expectations. That’s why it is particularly noteworthy that through challenging times for financial institutions, Nedbank Private Wealth has continued to flourish. New business from referrals and client numbers are at an all-time high, with impressive annual growth rates and profits. Intriguingly, they put a lot of that down to humility, placing their clients’ interests first, even above the interests of shareholders.
“The word ‘humility’ doesn’t feature often in the banker’s lexicon, and that’s a shame because for us it has a precise and practical meaning: by putting our clients’ interests first, in effect, we are honouring our shareholders’ desire for us to build a sustainable and reputable business. And by the same token, we are also respecting our regulators who want us to treat our customers fairly. Quite simply, that’s what we do,” says Greg Horton, Managing Director of Nedbank Private Wealth.
This article is sponsored by Nedbank Private Wealth