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The Covid-19 pandemic does not stop BPR Lestari Group's performance. Although not as good as the previous year, BPR Lestari's assets continue to grow positively, the size of the business is growing, the business performance of all groups has grown positively and recorded significant profit. Because the bank can't be closed, by implementing strict health protocols, BPR Lestari continues to operate with limited employees and working hours. Hand washing facilities, contactless hand sanitizer, body temperature measuring device, mandatory mask-wearing policy, social distancing, and limiting employees on duty are the basic rules that are applied in every office.
According to Alex P. Chandra, Founder and CEO of PT (Incorporated Company) Lestari Capital, this Covid-19 pandemic is perhaps the most innovative and effective period in the history of his business journey to build BPR Lestari. In the last 6 months, there have been six digital initiatives that have been successfully completed. According to Alex, they may not have been completed under normal conditions. "But today's result is not because of what we are doing now, this is the result of the work that was done when it was still normal which was then spurred on by the pandemic," said Alex.
The forerunner of BPR Lestari's digital banking, Lestari Home Banking, is increasingly taking shape. Alex acknowledged that currently BPR Lestari is in the middle of a storm, but this is not the time to talk about risks. "Thank God we have done a stress test on the readiness of the BPR Lestari Group to face a crisis, we are ready and confident to get through this crisis," said Alex.
According to Alex, various innovation breakthroughs were made by BPR Lestari, for example DepositoGo, this first innovation during the pandemic was part of a series of digital initiatives from BPR Lestari Bali whose platform used the LestariMobile mobile banking application that was launched earlier. By placing deposits online, customers can manage their funds themselves, transferring from low-interest savings or current accounts to higher-interest deposits. Disbursement can also be done at any time without penalty.
BPR Lestari Bali has anticipated a change in behavior due to the pandemic, where there is the tendency to carry out many activities from home, including consumptive activities, by launching a second innovation: Order From Home. This is an additional new feature in the LestariDiskon application, this allows MSMEs to serve consumer orders without the need for the consumers to go to merchant outlets. Application users can order products of MSME partners from home and the orders will be directly delivered to the consumers. Orders will be delivered by the delivery fleet owned by the merchant or via online motorcycle taxis with instant delivery within the city area.
In the initial stage, Order From Home is only intended for ready stock and instant delivery orders, but management iscurrently developing a feature so that consumers can place pre-orders. Users can also show their e-card on the LestariDiskon application to get a 10-50% discount at merchants, starting from restaurants, coffee shop, recreation area, fashion shop, spa treatment to villas and hotels. "We provide this feature to MSMEs to make it easier for them to reach a wider market, where currently more consumers order goods or food from home," said Alex.
During the pandemic, BPR Lestari also managed to make a big jump to be on the same level with other big banks by successfully providing free real-time transfers to any bank account, checking accounts and PPOB (Online Bank Payment Point) transactions. "The transactions will be easier for the customers; this is an advantage for the customers. This is Lestari's capability that equals large banks," added Alex, while explaining the third innovation. Making the most of information technology, Lestari TV has become the fourth innovation for BPRs Lestari, as a substitute for the Money and I Magazine which has been “the voice of BPR Lestari ". The Online Account Opening feature that is just waiting for OJK (Financial Services Authority) approval is the fifth innovation, and Alex's sixth big job is to acquire the BPR Bina Arta Swadaya Jogjakarta which will complement the BPR Lestari Group network in 7 provinces.
According to Alex, these achievements will make BPR Lestari more ready for the future. The office looks less active, but it turns out that more transactions are taking place. "It seems there is not much that can be done during the pandemic, when you cannot meet people. However, our company works in full speed and in a ‘ready‘ position to step on the gas, so that later when the business really is reborn, our position is much better equipped to anticipate the next surge, " he explained.
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