BDO Unibank Inc., the country’s largest lender controlled by tycoon Henry Sy, said its whole operations will not be affected by the possible closure of 26 branches by the Cebu City government over business permit issue.
The Cebu City government reportedly threatened to shut down 26 BDO branches which had yet to renew their business permits.
Cebu City mayor Tomas Osmeña was quoted as saying all branches of BDO in the city were operating without business permits.
Osmeña also filed a case against BDO Magallanes-Plaridel branch for allegedly not declaring their correct gross annual income.
BDO, in a statement, expressed an apology to its customers in Cebu “for whatever inconvenience the recent threat of branch closures in Cebu City has created.”
“We have complied with the requirements but despite that, the city government has refused to accept payments for local taxes and fees, and issue the permits contrary to what they did in the past,”BDO said.
“We have made the necessary arrangements for the clients to be serviced in alternative locations. This is a local issue and has no bearing whatsoever on the operation of the bank as a whole,” BDO said.
A local newspaper quoted Osmeña as saying that “we will survive without Banco De Oro. They’re not the only bank here in the city.”
The local official said he would announce the specific date when he would order the closure of the bank branches. He said business establishments without permits should not be allowed to operate as required under the law.
BDO president and chief executive Nestor Tan said last week BDO was planning to put up 50 to 70 branches this year. He said most of these branches would be built outside the National Capital Region.
BDO is eyeing a 10-percent growth in net profit in 2017 to P28.810 billion from the 2016 projection of P26.129 billion amid the robust domestic economy that would sustain the expansion of its core businesses.
BDO y posted a net income of P19.321 billion in the first nine months of 2016. BDO expects net interest income to grow 16 percent this year to P76.556 billion from the projected P65.780 billion in 2016.
Total assets are expected to reach P2.6 trillion this year. BDO has more than 1,000 operating branches and over 3,000 ATMs nationwide. It also has a branch in Hong Kong and 26 overseas remittance and representative offices in Asia, Europe, North America and the Middle East.