The FINANCIAL -- One of the leading banks of Azerbaijan - PASHA Bank - is creating sustainable value for its clients and employees, its shareholders and for society in Georgia, taking responsibility for the company’s effects on environmental and social wellbeing in the country by implementing a number of projects within its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative.
PASHA Bank is committed to CSR and supporting Georgia’s development, focusing its efforts on the areas of youth, health, education and the environment.
“In December 2016 the Bank promised to dedicate its CSR activities to environmental projects throughout 2017. We pay considerable attention to CSR and we have already carried out a number of charity and social activities in Georgia. This year we have decided to mostly focus on environmentally-friendly projects and get our clients and partners involved as well,” said Chief Commercial Officer of PASHA Bank, Goga Japaridze.
Meanwhile, PASHA Bank is famous for its constant support and contribution to the growth and development of the business sector in Georgia.
For the third consecutive year PASHA Bank has been the special partner of the most influential and prestigious annual business awards ceremony in Georgia - Golden Brand.
Golden Brand has been awarding locally-operating companies for their various achievements since 2006.
“PASHA Bank is the partner of Golden Brand Awards for the third time this year. By doing so, we once again underline our readiness and desire to support the development of local business. We believe that the Awards serve as additional motivator for the winner companies and prove their success,” Mr. Japaridze said.
Being a Baku-based financial institution, PASHA Bank has been providing corporate and investment banking services to large and medium-sized enterprises in Georgia since 2013. The slogan of the Bank is ‘New heights. Together.’ And as Mr. Japaridze said, supporting customers and achieving success together with them is the main goal of the Bank.
“Over the last three years, PASHA Bank’s credit portfolio has increased from zero to GEL 110 million, while total assets exceeded GEL 250 million. Since 2015, the Bank has become profitable. . By providing high quality corporate and investment banking services and financing large projects in Georgia, Azerbaijan and Turkey, we contribute to the development of the regional economy,” Mr. Japaridze said.
Q. PASHA Bank has been actively involved in CSR campaigns over the recent past. What are the specific projects the Bank is involved in?
A. I think nowadays it is very important to raise awareness of ecological problems and do the best to solve them.
This year we made a special New Year gift for our partners and planted 2017 Georgian Pine Trees near central Georgia’s resort town Borjomi, where 260 hectares of forest got burnt down in August 2008.
Since then we have been implementing various CSR projects, but I would single out in particular the hackathon ‘Smart City’, which was hosted by Caucasus University and where student teams competed in the generation of innovative solutions to make our capital city a better place in regard to parking, ecology, queues and other related issues.
The teams were evaluated by the following criteria: whether the innovation is applicable in real life; and its originality.
The winner in the contest Green Project was granted a prize from PASHA Bank.
We consider it important to involve the young generation in ecological issues and to hear their initiatives on how to care about the environment in a better and more effective way.
Q. This year again PASHA Bank congratulated its partners and clients on Easter in a special way. Can you tell us about the initiative?
A. Yes, every year we try to congratulate our partners and clients on Easter in a very special way that is different every year.
This year on behalf of our associates the Bank planted 1,000 Georgian Oak (Quercus Iberica) and Imeretian Oak (Quercus Imeretina) trees, the latter of which is in the Red List of threatened species of plants. The seedlings were planted in the Imereti region and fully covered one of the areas in the Ajameti Managed Reserve where rehabilitation processes are carried out. Together with Treepex and PASHA Bank the representatives of the Agency of Protected Areas of Georgia and local schoolchildren also joined the planting process.
Q. What activities can you name as an example of supporting business activities in Georgia in 2016?
A. Our core business implies financing large and medium-sized enterprises for their further development. Therefore most of our work is actually aimed at supporting business activities in Georgia. In parallel with this, we frequently finance various business-related conferences and trainings. In this way we support the development of professionals working in the business sector, which is most certainly a significant prerequisite for economic development.
Besides partnering the Golden Brand Awards Ceremony we also supported the Telecommunication Meeting in Georgia; the marketing event Spotlight; the 13th Bond Congress Baltic States and Caucasus, events organized by the American Chamber of Commerce in Georgia, HR Hub, International Business Forum and others.
We will continue supporting conferences and forums this year as well.
Q. Tell us about ‘Business Café’. What is its contribution to developing Georgian business?
A. Business Cafe is a project initiated by one of the leading consulting and recruitment companies in Georgia - Insource, and has been supported by PASHA Bank since 2015.
Business Café meetings are attended by the top managers of large and medium-sized enterprises on a regular basis. Each meeting offers a convenient platform for sharing knowledge and experiences as well as discussing the recent trends in various industries and the economy as a whole.
Interesting discussion topics and an interactive event format attract participants and contribute to the rising popularity of the project. As of 2017 two new sponsors have joined the initiative - ACT and Orient Logic.
The speakers of the meetings are selected considering their experience. For example, this May the ninth meeting of Business Café was held in Tbilisi where Mr. Sascha Ternes, Managing Partner at TERNES Real Estate Fund LLC and former CEO of ProCredit Bank, spoke about organisational culture, business ethics and corporate management.
Q. Why does PASHA Bank consider it so important to support business?
A. We are oriented on developing ourselves as well as caring about the success of our customers. We try to be very attentive while cooperating with them. The interest of our customers is the cornerstone of our corporate strategy. That is why we aim to support the development of our customers. In fact, supporting business activities is our primary function. We help the companies to develop and expand.