Siam Commercial Bank (SCB) has set up a bank in Myanmar after receiving a subsidiary business licence from the Central Bank of Myanmar, aiming to expand in the neighbouring market via offline and online platforms.
SCB, the country's fourth-largest commercial lender by assets, notified the Stock Exchange of Thailand on Thursday that it had registered a company under the law of Myanmar under the name Siam Commercial Bank Myanmar Ltd (SCBM).
SCB will hold a 100% stake in SCBM's total issued and paid-up capital, with registered capital of US$150 million (4.73 billion baht).
SCBM is in the process of operational establishment for inspection before being granted the final subsidiary licence from Myanmar's central bank.
SCB co-president Sarut Rattanaporn said SCBM will focus on large corporate clients, both Thai and Burmese, operating in Myanmar.
Many of the bank's corporate clients are already operating in Myanmar, and outbound investment is expected to rise in line with the country's growth potential.
Cross-border trade and remittance, both individually and commercially, are other key areas for the new entity. In particular, cross-border trade between Thailand and the CLMV countries (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Vietnam) has been rising, Mr Sarut said.
SCBM also plans to explore retail banking business in Myanmar, including digital services to respond to customer needs.
With the strategy, the bank aims to strike a balance between digital banking and brick-and-mortar branches.
SCBM may not need to set up as many as 10 branches as the central bank allows, Mr Sarut said, but SCB will take time to explore the market first before making a final decision.
The Covid-19 situation will be a key factor influencing business strategy, he said.