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The entrepreneurs choice

Article - June 4, 2012
Plantersbank is the Philippines' leading bank for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)
For the past four decades, Planters Development Bank (Plantersbank) has been dedicated to helping SMEs get off the ground in the Philippines. “When we started focusing on lending to SMEs, no one else was paying attention to them. But because of our success, now most banks have started to lend to SMEs,” says the bank’s Chairman and CEO Ambassador Jesus P Tambunting. “It is not an easy sector to lend to, but we have shown everyone that supporting SMEs is a viable banking activity.”

Plantersbank’s initiatives and products have brought it various accolades and awards on an almost annual basis. A Harvard Business School paper cited it as one of three development banks worldwide that have successfully designed their operations to achieve a strong double bottom line, i.e. being able to meet its financial objectives while making a positive social impact. “People respond positively to what we do, and we have managed to attract very prestigious foreign investors like FMO, the Asian Development Bank, and the World Bank’s IFC,” says Mr. Tambunting. “Lending to SMEs means more than just banking; you see small businesses grow and generate employment.”