TBC Bank CFO on the London Capital Markets Day Forum

On Friday 13 May 2016, TBC Bank hosted its first Capital Markets Day (CMD) at the Sofitel London St James Hotel in London, with the aim of providing investors and analysts the opportunity to meet the Bank’s senior management team and receive a detailed insight into the business, as well as to hear TBC Bank’s first quarter 2016 financial results.

Prior to TBC Bank event, the Georgian Prime Minister hosted a lunch presentation to extol the investment potential of the country, as reported in last week’s GEORGIA TODAY.

Speakers at the forum included Mamuka Khazaradze, Chairman of Supervisory Board, who opened the forum; Badri Japaridze, Vice Chairman of the Supervisory Board, giving a Macro overview; Vakhtang Butskhrikidze, discussing Business strategy; Giorgi Shagidze, CFO, on Financial performance; George Tkhelidze, CRO, talking on the topic of Risk Management; Nino Masurashvili, Deputy CEO, on Retail Banking; Nika Kurdiani, Deputy CEO, talking about MSME Banking; and Koba Gvenetadze – Chairman of the Board of National bank of Georgia.

Over 100 market participants attended the event, among them investors, analysts, brokers, global banks and international media.

GEORGIA TODAY had an EXCLUSIVE interview with Giorgi Shagidze, Chief Financial Officer of TBC Bank, to find out more.

Why did TBC organize Capital Markets Day? Why in London?

London is the most important city from the perspective of its high investment concentration- giving us the opportunity to present to the investors and analysts the latest banking news- the TBC Bank strategy, goals, and development plans- from Macro to specific banking areas. And it’s a unique opportunity for the investors themselves to see the actual team behind the numbers, to see their energy and to enter into a Q&A session to find out more. Such CMD events are an established practice for companies not based in London or New York- to organize CMDs and this, our first, will hopefully be the first of an annual tradition for us.

What did the investors and bankers learn there?

First they attended the lunch which was hosted by the Prime Minister of Georgia, Giorgi Kvirikashvili, organized by the ‘Invest in Georgia’. The PM shared his view on the country’s development and its main priorities and then allowed the investors the chance to directly question him. When people invest in companies like TBC Bank, which are located in emerging or frontier markets, the Macro environment is extremely important- and so is the exposure of those investors to the PM and the Finance Minister.

Following the PM’s lunch meeting, the CMD began, focussing on the banking sector and developments within TBC Bank. The governor of the NBG, Koba Gvenetadze, also attended the CMD to share his view with investors.

You presented the first quarter 2016 financial results. Please tell us something about them.

We are continuing to deliver strong results, with no dramatic changes in the first Quarter. We had good numbers in profitability, commission income and operation efficiency. We had strong numbers in asset quality, too, which is very important especially now following the devaluation period. Growth was understandably reduced as focus inevitably turns to asset quality. We basically made it clear to investors that we are heading back towards growth having successfully weathered the challenges.

What message did you have, as an 'ambassador' to Georgian banking/finances, for the London audience?

First, Georgia really is unique in its investor-friendly environment and economic growth in this region and beyond. Georgia has performed beautifully throughout the regional crisis- devaluation, Macro parameters, national reserve level, inflation…

Second, in terms of that investment-friendly environment- all rankings and studies show improvement. Recently there was report claiming that Georgia was among the Top 4 most secure countries in the EU and good results were seen in studies on tax friendliness- that is something which is hugely appreciated. The third pillar of the country is the upcoming reforms- two of which are tax-related (reinvested profit will not be taxed and a planned pension reform). Then, with regards the banking sector, investors appreciate how developed the banks are, seeing that they have good growth prospects and promising profitability. TBC Bank truly demonstrates the high customer experience, internet, mobile, iPhone, and iPad banking, through which it differentiates itself.

What feedback have you received following the event?

Very positive feedback- both for our CMD event and the PM session. This encourages us to prepare future CMD events.

How is the investment climate looking in Georgia at present? What needs to be done to improve this?

Georgia clearly stands out in the region. It is easy to seek out government officials to discuss initiatives; the system is corruption free and the service is efficient and fast.

Certain reforms are needed- pension is something I would strongly support from the point of view of the impact on the potential creation of Lari funding and capital market development, which is then a crucial factor for our SMEs.

The key message: Continuity and consistency.

Katie Ruth Davies

23 May 2016 19:30