Ömer Tetik, BT CEO: "Everybody talks about the crisis, the challenges, but if we talk individually, there is optimism"
30 March 2023 Reading time 5:00 minutes
The launch conference of the PwC CEO Romania Survey 2023 Report took place, where CEOs discussed at length the most frequently asked questions in business: forecasts for 2023, main threats, current macroeconomic and geopolitical situation. The event took place on 29 March in Bucharest.
BT was represented by Ömer Tetik, BT General Manager. Statements made on the occasion, as reported by PwC and Ziarul Financiar, are as follows:
I think that now in Romania there is a demographic crisis and an execution crisis. We think there are a lot of opportunities. In our day-to-day business we see quite a sharp decline in mortgages - people are buying fewer houses. People haven't given up and they haven't upgraded to cheaper cars. There has been a slowdown in saving, but it has picked up.
We work with other people's money and then our challenges are an accumulation of other people's challenges. If we talk individually, the situation is exactly like the picture in the analysis: everybody talks about the crisis, the challenges, but if we talk individually, there is optimism: we believe we will have new opportunities, we invest further. And we have slowed down some investment, but not abruptly. We continue lending, we have quite ambitious growth budgets.
Inflation is nothing new. Romania grew in the early 2000s with double-digit inflation. The important thing is to adapt.
100 CEOs said the rest of the economy will do badly, but they will do well. I think we're more comfortable (in terms of our own business) because we know our numbers. We're less emotional than we are about what's being said out there.
The global context is highly volatile, with many disruptive factors (re)shaping the local and international economic environment. We have these polarities, which amplify each other: first the pandemic, then the conflict in Ukraine, the energy crisis, inflation, problems in supply chains, the climate crisis and the need for energy transformation, which comes with a huge cost and a sense of urgency.
Over the years, each crisis has brought a reframing of the way society is organised, but it has also prepared fertile ground for opportunities. In concrete terms, we have prepared ourselves extremely pragmatically so that we are close to our customers and colleagues. To use a metaphor - we are closer to the battlefield, we are closer to our customers and colleagues and we act much more quickly to support them with solutions that solve the problems that inevitably arise in any crisis.
Our line of business is financial intermediation, and our challenges are in fact the total challenges of our clients, the challenges of the Romanian economy, so we focus on how we can help our clients, how we can contribute to sustainable economic growth in Romania, as our main strategy. We are ready to respond to them quickly and with good solutions. We are fully mobilised and try to shorten our response times and decision chains as much as possible.
Banca Transilvania has Romanian DNA and this is one of our main strengths. We have grown with our clients and the economy, we have taken part in all the transformations that the economic environment has encountered in the last three decades and we have managed to keep pace with the market with agility.We have built the largest bank in South-East Europe, and all this is the result of an organisational culture based on growth and development. This is our foundation and the reason why we believe in Romania and remain optimistic.
It is clear that we are going through a difficult period for business - where one of the ingredients is the increased cost of finance. But we are in a much better strategic position than in previous crises. We are a strong and very well-capitalised bank with a diversified portfolio and increased favourability - we are the bank of choice when it comes to the first bank account or first funding. Of course, we are also helped and encouraged by our low non-performing loan ratio and above European average provision coverage. All these are signs that we are ready to finance the country, the economy and the people, even if equally complicated and volatile times lie ahead.
Now in its 26th year, the PwC Global CEO Survey is a snapshot of the vision and business decisions of company executives. The survey gathers the responses of more than 4,400 CEOs from 105 countries (including Romania) on the most important issues facing society today. The survey was conducted between October and November 2022.
The study aimed to examine the following issues:
- Uncertainties arising from the current situation and executive decisions in this context
- Race for the future. What are the next steps in business?
- Balancing day-to-day decisions against the delivery of strategic initiatives
Some of the most important results on the perception of Romanian CEOs:
- 62% of CEOs expect a slowdown in the growth of the national economy this year;
- 92% say they are already reducing operating costs or plan to do so;
- 69% believe that labour and skills shortages will affect the profitability of the industry;
- 73% plan to invest in process automation and workforce development.
The 12th edition of the PwC CEO Survey 2023 report for Romania can be read in full here.
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