What is the outlook of economically resilient Filipinos in terms of growing wealth in the coming years? How can individuals and families best handle wealth issues?
HSBC Philippines recently introduced personalized financial services that aim to help customers and their families achieve their goals, through their Expanded HSBC Premier Family Eligibility. Held at Shangri-La Fort in BGC, Taguig City, HSBC Philippines’ head of Wealth and Personal Banking Peter Faulhaber welcomed guests to the event and Concert King Martin Nievera serenaded them with his music. Faulhaber also granted an exclusive interview with The STAR.
THE PHILIPPINE STAR: Any advice you would share with Filipino families about growing and protecting wealth and doing banking activities in this modern and often tumultuous era?
PETER FAULHABER: Filipinos are generally conservative in the way they invest and spend their money. This is good; however, as the population accumulates wealth, there are opportunities out there that they can take on and make their money grow. Thus, our research suggests that the wealth of Filipinos will more than double by 2030.
This requires talking to the right financial partner who is not just pushing product but, more importantly, bespoke solutions, which has been HSBC’s approach over the years.
What motivated HSBC to expand HSBC Premier Family Eligibility? Is this also due to the changing definitions and characteristics of what today constitutes "family" in this 21st century?
The expansion of the HSBC Premier Family Eligibility was based on consumer research and frontline feedback based on customer profiles. As we witnessed and experienced for ourselves over the last three years, the pandemic amplified our value for family. We saw how fleeting life can be and therefore, how precious time spent with family is. Equally important is the fact that our customers confirmed sharing this same sentiment. We took it to heart and wanted to ensure that we are able to support and enable, not only their individual goals, but more importantly their family goals, dreams and aspirations.
One of the key themes that customers focused on in life is their family, which includes their extended families. It reinforced that family is to be cherished and family time is to be appreciated, so they look forward to celebrate and make the most of festive seasons and celebrate life occasions.
What are advantages and benefits of this extended eligibility program?
As the definition of family continues to evolve, we have extended the eligibility to Premier customers’ chosen family — be it their spouse or chosen life partner, children, parents, grandchildren, nephews and nieces. This allows the Premier Family accountholders to enjoy the full benefits of Premier without having to maintain separate maintaining balances, yet with all the benefits and privileges of a Premier account that they can enjoy here and abroad.
Some different ways that a Premier accountholder can extend their benefits:
• Through a Premier Partner account, our Premier customers can extend their Premier benefits to their spouse or chosen life partner, regardless of their gender identity and sexual orientation.
• Through a Premier Parent account, our Premier customers can continue to give back to their parents by allowing them to enjoy their Premier benefits as well without having to maintain separate Premier Total Relationship balance.
• Through Premier children accounts — Junior Pack and Next Gen — our Premier customers can start preparing their children, grandchildren, nephews and nieces, aged seven to 28, for their own financial independence, by extending their Premier eligibility whether here or abroad.
This expanded Premier Family eligibility is a recognition of the Filipino culture of supporting extended Family members, and our acknowledgement of everyone’s definition of a family. We know that each family is unique and we are committed to providing diverse ways to help them build a solid foundation for their family’s future — by opening up a world of opportunities for their chosen family.
Is this expansion a global strategy and new policy, or unique to the Philippines or to Asia only? If only the Philippines or Asia, why?
The Premier Family is part of the HSBC Premier global proposition, where a Premier client can extend their benefits to their spouse and children. We tweaked the definition of Premier family in the Philippines to include nephews, nieces and grandparents, to resonate more with the local market. The extended HSBC Premier eligibility to partners is available in select markets in Asia, Europe, the US, North America and Latin America.
HSBC has been in the Philippines for 148 years. Can you share any interesting tidbits of information or anecdotes about your history here and your beginnings?
HSBC has been in the Philippines for 148 years, bridging clients to business and personal wealth opportunities across the globe. Being one of the leading full-service international banks in the Philippines, we create solutions for our clients, connecting clients to opportunities and helping them achieve their ambitions.
We have thrived from the very beginning, evident even back in 1875, when we opened our first branch in the Philippines in Binondo (in Manila).
In 1883 we addressed the growing needs of sugar traders, as we helped the pioneering sugar and rice mills in the country.
We assisted the expansion of the Dagupan railway, which helped connect traders with businesses in Luzon and overseas export markets.
What about in this modern era? How are you adapting to the digital age?
In more recent times, we have seen how our investments in technology have enabled individuals and businesses to adapt to the changing times. We’ll continue to invest and enhance our digital solutions that will digitize commercial transactions for speed, ease of use and security; help more clients to adopt these tools and, importantly, capture opportunities in digital payments and collections, FX and supply chain financing, and build greater capacity, resilience and security against any disruptions.
How many years have you been in the Philippines? What do you and your family members enjoy most about the country and how do they find life here?
My family and I have been in the Philippines for over four years now. Time flies! We really enjoy the Philippines, in particular the local travel opportunities, the opportunities for our children, and the warm Filipino people.
What are your impressions of Filipinos and their families?
Being here for quite some time now, I noticed that Filipinos have high regard for their families. Families come first and they are the reason why they work hard, just so they can provide them good lives and education. Also, the concept of “extended family” is evident. Family members extend beyond the nuclear family, and even the household staff is considered members of the family. That “sense of belongingness” is much present and really very admirable.
In your speech you said this extended eligibility by HSBC "is an ode to the Filipino culture of supporting extended family members." Any last observations about this Filipino cultural phenomenon?
We see that Filipinos are very much open, welcoming and accepting about whom they call their family members. We recognize this and hence it’s the reason why we feel that it is time to extend Premier privileges to these dear people in our customers’ lives.
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To learn more about HSBC Premier, visit https://www.hsbc.com.ph/premier/.
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