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KBC Bank Ireland case study

A little over two years ago, KBC Bank Ireland commenced its journey of transformation from being a wholesale bank with some mortgage and deposit products to becoming a multi-channel, digitally-led, full retail bank. There was an opportunity in Ireland for a fresh new brand that thought differently about consumers and how they would bank in the future and the story truly started in September 2013 when the organisation launched ‘The Bank of You’ to Irish consumers.


“From the outset it was immediately clear that to become a digitally-led bank we could not continue to build on our legacy systems,” says Evert Vandenbussche, chief operations officer. “We needed a robust and scalable platform, flexible to adapt to future needs and that would allow us to integrate fast front-end, mobile, online and third party solutions. We wanted to be up and running fast and be able to easily and quickly grow new products, bundles and services through a variety of channels.”

Today, all KBC’s retail accounts and payment transactions are handled by the new platform, deposits and current accounts are up, as are customer numbers. And this summer the bank won the Temenos Customer Award for product innovation.

KBC is a challenger bank with over 200,000 customers, targeting more affluent customers like the young professionals, the mid-career savers, and the soon to retire segments. The aim is to grow this significantly by the year 2020 and to be a real contender in the banking space in Ireland. KBC believes these segments of customers  value service excellence, accessibility, innovation and ease of use and the bank kept these attributes front of mind when choosing its new core banking platform from Temenos.

“Everything is driven by the simplicity of our processes,”

says Vandenbussche. “That meant keeping our core platform as close to out-of-the-box as possible. This not only helps keep things slick, quick and simple but helps you keep running costs down.” Innovation is driven by designing efficient process flows and being able to quickly deploy new and relevant product features through a variety channels.

The system has halved the time it takes to set up a new customer to less than 12 minutes, and the bank can launch new products within hours. This, says Vandenbussche, is having an impact on performance. In 2015 KBC will have introduced over 40,000 new customers to the ‘Bank of You’. 

Running costs are down too.

“If you build for digital and transfer these processes to the physical space you can get 15-40% efficiencies, depending on the processes and you create more space for good conversations with your customers instead of administration”

says Vandenbussche. 

Further gains will come as the bank retrains and redeploys staff that have maintained the 12 legacy systems soon to be retired. Some will work on innovation and front-end development, some on the processes and the rest on integration and operations. 

“It’s great for speed and cost,” he adds, “And the wisdom in the system is amazing. It’s helping us build a very positive customer story.”