Children from the Cotton Thomas Comprehensive School in St. Kitts share Republic Bank EC Limited’s birthday cake.

CASTRIES. St. Lucia — As the month-long celebration of its one-year anniversary came to a close on November 13, Republic Bank EC Limited (RBEC) again expressed gratitude to its staff, customers and the wider community. One year ago, on November 1, 2019, Republic Bank EC Limited opened its doors to customers in five Eastern Caribbean Currency Union territories and Sint Maarten.

The month long “RBEC Turns One” birthday celebrations commenced on October 19 and concluded on November 13. The bank chose to celebrate by rewarding its customers, strengthening relationships with the business community and promoting a spirit of kindness and community spirit in its operating territories throughout the region.

The celebrations included the managing director, country managers and customers sharing with their respective countries, via social media channels, heartfelt testimonies, expressions of gratitude, reaffirmations of commitment and exciting news about the bank’s 2021 plans.

All branches were festively decorated and new and existing customers were treated to happy hour specials such as having their opening deposit paid by the bank. There was a reduction in interest rates on new loans and some waiver of fees to incentivize home and land ownership region wide.

Very importantly in these critical times, Republic Bank EC Limited promoted Random Acts of Kindness, with each of the territories selecting a charity to be part of the celebration to receive donations and share in the birthday celebrations.

Managing Director, Michelle Palmer-Keizer, in her address to the region spoke of how taking over operations from the incumbent bank was not as simple as swapping logos and signs.

“The transition entailed updating and improving our systems to be Caribbean-cantered; re-training staff, and doing deep research into the new markets to better serve its needs,” said Mrs. Palmer-Keizer. “Four months in, responding to the outfall from the pandemic, the Bank developed and launched new products to respond to the markets critical and immediate needs.

“We launched a corporate social responsibility “COVID-19 Care Initiative,” responding to the most critical needs and communities in each territory,” she said. We donated US$200,000 to the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States Commission for the procurement of medication and personal protective equipment and to fund a public outreach programme.”

Despite all these challenges, one year in, a recent Employee Engagement survey rated higher than the global benchmark. In addition, RBEC registered one of the lowest attrition outcomes and very high customer satisfaction level, confirmed in the testimonials given by several customers in each territory.

For example, Simeon Joseph in Dominica stated, “I’m a very happy …because I always feel worthy, welcomed and valued as a Republic Bank customer.”

Grell Browne in Saint Kitts said, “What I’ve noticed at Republic Bank is a willingness to go for the yes! Trying to get you that car …trying to get you that loan …is what Republic Bank goes for.”

Republic Bank is confident and hopeful about the future.

“Our Bank is fully integrated into our communities and settled for the long run, supported by our Group and 183 years of service and banking experience,” said Mrs. Palmer-Keizer. “We want you to be optimistic about the future and go ahead, make those plans to become more resilient, to reinvent your business or yourself for the new times. We are ready support you and your communities which are now our communities.”

Republic Bank EC Limited’s birthday celebrations are over however, “Random Acts of Kindness,” community engagement and rewarding customers with special offers continue. The Christmas season is almost here, and Republic Bank intends to roll out a tailor-made campaign to better the lives of its customers given the current circumstances.

The Holy Family Children Home in St. Lucia shared in the Republic Bank EC Limited’s Birthday celebrations.