Firstrand banking group selects OpenPages ORM to reduce Basel II capital allocation costs

21 July 2008

OpenPages®, a leading provider of enterprise GRC management solutions that optimise business performance, today announced that FirstRand Banking Group, one of South Africa’s largest banking organisations, has selected the OpenPages Operational Risk Management (ORM) solution to address Basel II capital allocation costs as part of the company’s overall risk management strategy. FirstRand selected OpenPages ORM because of the solution’s rapid time to value and its overall functionality, as well as OpenPages’ highly regarded domain expertise and leadership position in the risk management space.

“In today’s highly competitive financial services environment, obtaining Basel II AMA regulatory approval can result in a competitive advantage,” said Jan Lubbe, head of Enterprise Risk Management, at FirstRand. “It allows us to improve the maturity and sophistication of our risk management techniques, and long term, also reduces our regulatory capital, meaning that we’ll have more money to put to work in our commercial business. To address this challenge, we needed a solution that we could deploy quickly and that could easily adapt to our risk management framework. OpenPages ORM, backed by a team of experts from OpenPages, was the clear choice for FirstRand in meeting our Basel II and ongoing risk management goals.”

Other factors that contributed to FirstRand’s decision to deploy OpenPages’ technology include the following:

• Time-to-Value – FirstRand needed to implement a technology solution quickly in order to start the AMA application process.

• Total Cost of Ownership – FirstRand required a solution which would enable it to be self-sufficient in ongoing configuration of data and functionality. The inherent configurability of the OpenPages solution, combined with training and knowledge transfer from OpenPages’ expertise, will enable FirstRand to manage the system over time.

• Solution Evolution – FirstRand needed a solution with the agility to successfully adapt to the company’s evolving methodology. The OpenPages Platform supports a highly configurable framework which can adapt over time as FirstRand’s requirements evolve.

• Domain Expertise – FirstRand required domain knowledge from their technology partner to provide best practice guidance and to actively participate in the development and deployment of their operational risk methodology. Highly-regarded by leading industry organisations and customers alike, OpenPages partnered with FirstRand to support their unique methodology.

• Experienced Services Team – FirstRand needed to de-risk their project by working with an experienced implementation project team with many successful deployments behind them. With many successful deployments similar in size and scope to FirstRand, OpenPages was the right choice for FirstRand.

FirstRand knows first-hand about both banking and insurance. FirstRand Banking Group is a subsidiary of the listed entity FirstRand Limited which owns a number of leading financial services franchises in South Africa. The banking franchises include the commercial bank FNB, asset finance lender WesBank and investment bank Rand Merchant Bank, all of which operate throughout southern Africa. FNB owns and operates more than 650 branches and 4,000 ATMs throughout South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, and Swaziland.

Another of FirstRand Limited’s wholly owned subsidiaries, Momentum Group, houses life and health assurance, asset management and employee benefits.

As part of the OpenPages Platform, OpenPages ORM is a key building block in implementing an enterprise-wide, integrated approach to risk and compliance management. OpenPages ORM delivers a policy-driven, process-centric way to manage risk through self-assessments, end-user surveys, automated workflow and executive dashboards that provide management with the visibility, control and decision support required to understand and manage risks throughout the organisation to optimise business performance.

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