Fico (NYSE:FICO), the leading provider of analytics and decision management technology, today announced its plans to grow business in Turkey, as it opened its first office in Istanbul.
FICO has served banks in Turkey for more than 10 years, and counts among its clients several leading lenders, including Garanti, Yapi Kredi Bank, Finansbank, Akbank and Isbank.
As part of its market launch today, FICO and the Turkish banking publication Payment Source Monthly held a forum that included presentations from FICO experts as well as Professor Dr. Asaf Savaş Akat, an economist with Istanbul Bilgi Universitesi, and Professor Dr. Kerem Alkin, Bloomberg HT Director of PSM Yazan.
Turkey's economic growth and rapid credit expansion give it one of the healthiest European banking industries. Credit growth has stabilised, coming down from the 2010 growth rate of 35 percent to an estimated level of under 15 percent this year. At the Istanbul Finance Summit in September, Erdem Basci, Chairman of the Turkish Central Bank, said that prudent credit controls are necessary to prevent an overheated market.
"For banking clients in this region, it's a top priority to keep extending credit to consumers and businesses, but they need to find a more profitable way," said Kerem Gul, who manages FICO's operations in Turkey, and whose background includes more than 17 years of account/relationship management and business development experience in business application software, strategic & operational consultancy and business analytics. "Customer management, collections and analytics-driven performance are the top priorities for retail bankers, and FICO has leading solutions in each of these areas. We can also help banks understand how to improve risk management and capital management, and meet the regulations from Basel."
"This is absolutely the right time for FICO to increase our investment in the Turkish market," said Frans Labuschagne, FICO general manager for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, at today's office launch event in Istanbul. "In FICO's most recent survey of European banking risk professionals, respondents from Turkey put extending more credit to consumers and small businesses among their top priorities for 2013. But this growth needs to be undertaken with proper risk management. We have the solutions, the analytics and the experts to help banks meet this goal."
FICO also has European offices in the UK, Germany, Spain and Russia.