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Best Buy: Standard Chartered products built for big credit 'appetites'

Standard Chartered's new packages address the needs of customers at work and at home.

Banks in the Emirates are upping the ante when it comes to attracting new customers, recognising that what clients want is more important than developing and selling products for the sake of it.

In an effort to tap into the country's "high-credit appetite group", customers between 25 and 40, Standard Chartered has released two new retail banking packages: the Home Suite Package and Salary Suite Package.

"The packages come in line with the bank's customer-focus approach, which aims at identifying the specific needs of the customers," a spokesman for Standard Chartered says.

"Rather than developing products and selling them, we are developing financial packages that address our customers banking needs, be it around their salaries or around their mortgages."

The London and Hong Kong-listed lender says its Home Suite Package offers up to Dh18 million in property finance with a tenor of up to 25 years, as well as a pre-approved personal loan of up to Dh250,000, a free-for-life credit card, life insurance, property insurance and car bill payment.

The Salary Suite Package offers a free salary account, a free credit card, personal finance, free outward remittances and the option to select a range of other value-added banking products and services.

"There isn't a minimum salary transfer requirement [for this]," the spokesman says. "The Salary Suite Package provides its holders with zero minimum balance and maintenance fees on the account. There is also a waiver of outward remittance charges, waiver of credit card annual fees and a dedicated employee banking help desk.

"Customers also have easy access to personal loans, a free debit card and first cheque book."

Both bundles are also available under the bank's Sharia-compliant Saadiq Islamic Financial Services.

In other good news for Standard Chartered customers, the bank this week announced it had waived all charges on remittances to India. The offer lasts until May 31.

A month ago, Agence France-Presse reported that the UK-based bank said its 2010 net profit soared by almost a third after delivering a record performance for an eighth successive year.

Profit after tax jumped 29 per cent to US$4.2 billion (Dh15.5bn) from $3.3bn in 2009, the bank said on March 2.

Standard Chartered derives about 90 per cent of its income and profits from Asia, the Middle East and Africa.

For more information about the new packages, go to www.standardchartered.ae.

fglover@thenational.ae

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