Even though scandals surrounding European and U.S. banks have sparked legitimate criticism of certain abuses perpetrated by the financial industry, we are convinced that banks can, in principle, make an important and meaningful contribution to the sustainable development of national economies.

After all, the basic idea behind banking has always been to manage the money of many savers in a responsible way and lend this money to enterprises, to enable them to undertake worthwhile and necessary projects. Indeed, banks can and should fulfil several useful functions at once:

  • Banks promote saving and the accumulation of wealth by earning the trust of investors. On the basis of prudent regulation and deposit protection, we achieve this by building long-term relationships with our clients and by demonstrating a responsible approach to lending.
  • Banks pool large quantities of short-term and small savings deposits and from this pool disburse larger and longer-term loans, with which enterprises can make necessary and worthwhile investments.
  • Banks have experience in managing risk. Provided that they are aware of their responsibilities as risk managers, they are, for example, in a good position to determine the likelihood that a particular loan will be repaid.
  • Banks make their money by earning a margin between the interest they pay to depositors and the interest they charge to borrowers. This margin is used by the bank to cover its administrative costs and the default risk it incurs, while earning a certain amount of profit for its shareholders. The level of deposit interest rates therefore tells you something about the way the bank does business: For example, banks that earn wide margins through aggressive consumer lending will (be able to) pay higher interest rates on deposits than a bank that lends to businesses in a responsible way. In other words, by setting certain interest rates, a bank sends out signals about its business model, its risk management and the expectations of its owners with respect to profit.

The necessity of having a functioning money and credit system becomes most apparent when it fails, or when we look at countries where it does not even exist in the first place. Thus, banking systems, especially those in developing countries and emerging economies, are only now taking shape and in most cases only fulfil their economic functions in a very limited or inefficient way. Small and medium-sized enterprises therefore often have limited access to responsible finance in these environments. At the same time, there is often little savings culture in these countries. Our business strategy is geared towards overcoming precisely these problems.

How we promote fair banking:

Through its activities in South Eastern Europe, Eastern Europe and South America, the ProCredit group is committed to contributing to the economic, social and environmentally sustainable development of these regions. In these countries, ProCredit is the “Hausbank” for small to medium-sized businesses as well as for savers with average incomes. All ProCredit banks throughout the world are supported by ProCredit Bank Germany and are supervised, monitored and lead by ProCredit Holding.

  • ProCredit group primarily caters to small to medium-sized businesses. This is because these enterprises in particular drive growth and job creation in developing countries and emerging economies.
  • It is equally important to offer the populations in these countries simple, fair and transparent forms of saving and to earn their trust. ProCredit group actively works to establish a savings culture and promote financial literacy in the countries with which it cooperates. This ensures that clients experience their ProCredit Bank as a fair partner that provides professional advice and personalised service in the context of a mutually beneficial business relationship.
  • The ProCredit Banks are therefore more than just financiers. They are the “Hausbank” for their customers. They thus also provide domestic and international payment transactions, Internet banking, card business, loans for home renovation and other practical services to their clients for reasonable fees.
  • Perhaps even more characteristic of ProCredit group are the business activities that we do not engage in as a matter of principle: We refrain from promoting consumer loans, we strictly avoid all forms of speculative banking, and we disburse large loans only in well-founded exceptional cases.

ProCredit Holding is the sole or majority shareholder of all of the ProCredit institutions. In addition to having a common mission statement and common corporate values, we focus on providing secure access to loans and offering other financial services to small and medium-sized enterprises as well as on being trustworthy banks that offer excellent service to savers.

For reasons of precaution, we would like to draw your attention to the fact that the ProCredit financial holding group exclusively operates in the countries listed on the ProCredit Holding website under the protected trademarks of “ProCredit Bank” and “Banco ProCredit” and that it does not cooperate with credit intermediaries.

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