(Dec 15, RM4.72)
Maintain “sell” with unchanged target price of RM4.35. Last Friday, Alliance Financial Group Bhd (AFG) announced the appointment of Joel Kornreich as its group chief executive Officer (CEO). His appointment will take effect on Jan 1, 2015. According to the press release, Kornreich has over 23 years of experience in the financial services industry. Before joining Alliance Bank, he was with Citigroup for 20 years in various roles around the world.
We are excited about this new appointment for AFG. We believe the new CEO can revive AFG’s consumer banking operations and imbue the bank with the wealth of his global experience. Kornreich is reportedly well-known for his successful management of consumer banking businesses, built around superior service and innovative solutions.
Operationally, we believe AFG continues to lag its peers in the consumer banking space — reporting decreases in the credit card and personal loan segments in 2013 before accelerating only in 2014. Its mortgage portfolio remained buoyant with growth of 15% to 20% year-on-year (y-o-y). While still eyeing double-digit loan growth, momentum is expected to slow down in the coming quarters. Housing loans are expected to come off to 11% due to the impact of new regulations to control household debt. The HP portfolio has also been recording average growths of close to 50% y-o-y since 2013.
Its consumer market share is still shy of 3%. AFG accounts for 2.7% of the entire loan market in Malaysia. — TA Securities, Dec 15
This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on December 16, 2014.