Philippines’ leading challenger bank, Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC), through its partnership with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), successfully assisted hundreds of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps)/Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) beneficiaries to easily and quickly cash out aid from the national government through RCBC ATM Go partner merchants in Lake Sebu, South Cotabato, an identified geographically isolated and disadvantaged area (GIDA) by the DSWD.
RCBC’s partner sari-sari stores – Ebanen, Sigfred, and Negros Rice – were able to facilitate over P2 million cash withdrawals by 4Ps/CCT household beneficiaries in three days.
RCBC ATM Go is the country’s first grassroots-based, bank agnostic, and last mile handheld automated teller machine which utilizes mobile point-of-sale devices to dispense financial services in unbanked and underserved communities.
RCBC is currently the only Philippine private universal bank that has the most extensive reach covering 100% of the country across all its 82 provinces with close to 2,000 terminals operated by thousands of its partner merchants. More than 65 percent of RCBC ATM Go’s financial transactions are social grant cash withdrawals by CCT/4Ps household beneficiaries of the national government mostly residing in remote communities. RCBC is also the only Philippine bank that has the most number of ATM Go terminals in excess of 100 units servicing all five provinces under the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao covering Basilan, Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, Sulu, and Tawi Tawi.
Under the RCBC-DSWD Memorandum of Agreement signed in December 2022, RCBC will provide alternative payout channels for 4Ps/CCT beneficiaries. Prior to this engagement, RCBC has already collaborated with DSWD during the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2021, RCBC was able to assist the national government in distributing more than Php 21.3 billion through its social amelioration program to over 5.6 million household beneficiaries benefitting 28 million aggregate-covered individuals.
“RCBC has been tirelessly working to make banking available and meaningful for all Filipinos through our RCBC Moneybela Barangayan Banking and RCBC ATM Go servicing millions of Filipinos in the countryside,” says RCBC Executive Vice President and Chief Innovation and Inclusion Officer Lito Villanueva.
“RCBC’s mantra has always been innovations with empathy, and this is best relayed through digital-forward and frictionless banking services such as what RCBC ATM Go provides to those who live in geographically isolated and disadvantaged areas such as Lake Sebu,” Villanueva added.
As Lake Sebu is a remote community, there is a limited presence of financial institutions that can provide brick-and-mortar branches or ATM kiosks. Residents need an hour of travel and spend costly transportation of as much as P200 just to be able to withdraw financial aid given by the national government. There are more than 13,000 4Ps/CCT beneficiaries in Lake Sebu and not all can be served by existing financial service providers in the area.
“The pilot testing conducted in the three (3) barangays of Lake Sebu, South Cotabato in partnership with RCBC has been truly successful. The 4Ps beneficiaries were able to withdraw their grants quicker and more efficiently – it only took them less than a minute receiving the money. We would like to extend our thanks to RCBC for this initiative,” says DSWD SOCCSKSARGEN Regional Director Loreto Jr. V. Cabaya. SOCCSKSARGEN covers the provinces of South Cotabato, Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Sarangani and General Santos in Region 12.
Aside from RCBC ATM Go, RCBC has effectively implemented other pioneering, high-impact, human-centric, and demand driven digital financial innovations such as the one-stop-shop digital banking app RCBC Digital; RCBC DiskarTech, the Philippines’ first multi-lingual financial inclusion super app for the Filipino mass market in the vernacular Tagalog-English or Taglish and Cebuano; and RCBC Moneybela Barangayan Banking, the Philippines’ first physical-digital or phygital banking services that use sustainable e-trikes to serve geographically distant and disadvantaged and conflict areas of the country.
RCBC is one of the country’s fastest-growing banks, and the most awarded for its banking innovations. It is now the Philippines’ 5th largest privately-owned universal bank that breached the P1-Trillion asset mark by the end of June 2022 despite the COVID-19 pandemic. RCBC’s continuing digital and business transformation further enhanced its value and reach. With this, RCBC has become the most awarded bank in the Philippines. Among its global and local recognitions include a three-peat award as the Philippines’ Best Bank for Digital by Asiamoney, back-to-back wins for Best Financial Inclusion App by The Asian Banker’s Financial Technology Innovations Awards, and the YouTube challenger award for its viral and out-of-the-box digital ad campaigns generating combined views of over 17 million. Just recently, RCBC was also hailed as Grand Champion for Digital Payments and Financial Inclusion by the Bankers Institute of the Philippines.