Sector strategies

Creating sustainable competitive advantage through ecosystem solutions

Most banks would like to believe that they have a sector strategy. The reality, however, is that these claims are too often wide of the mark.

In our experience, standard sector strategies are owned by the wholesale banking division, and are used solely as a means of allocating credit or organizing teams. What we define as a sector-led strategy is very different, indeed: It consists of an integrated “ecosystem approach” towards targeting sectors, one that entails tailoring products and coverage at a bank-wide level for the sector ecosystem—in other words, working across corporate, commercial, small and medium-sized enterprises (SME), and retail to serve clients. Those banks that get sector strategies right outperform their peers by a significant margin.

An integrated sector approach should appeal most to any bank that has an existing wholesale and/or retail franchise but is thinking through how to leverage this platform to drive growth. This need not be only applicable to global universal banks, which are looking to get more out of their existing franchise, but is equally relevant to local and regional banks looking to build out an attacker strategy. Clearly, however, the starting points will be different, as well as the ability to move quickly to capture the opportunity. The key point is to understand how a more integrated approach can help the bank unlock new value by focusing on the sector ecosystem over the client pipeline. What is an integrated sector strategy? How, in practice, do banks realize the benefits of the strategy? This Oliver Wyman Point-of-View lays out the strategic and operating model requirements to deliver.

How sector solutions compare to other bank strategies

Sector strategies