The number of private banks approved for operation in China has reached 18 in total just five years after the licensing of the country’s first private lender in December 2014.
In December 2014 Tencent-backed WeBank (微众银行) became the first private bank approved for business in China, after obtaining a financial license from the Shenzhen municipal banking regulator.
The move marked the start of private banking trials in China, 18 months following the State Council’s call for “exploring the establishment of privately operated banks” in June 2013.
In July 2013 the State Council released the “Guidance Opinions Concerning Finance Supporting Economic Structural Adjustments and Transition and Upgrade” (关于金融支持经济结构调整和转型升级的指导意见), which proposed “trials of private capital establishing private banks that independently bear risk.”
In March 2013 the then-China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC) officially launched work in relation to private bank trials, while all five of the initial group of banks that obtained approval had commenced operation by the end of 2015.
A total of 18 private banks have obtained approval for establishment at present, with one other private bank obtaining approval for preparations to establish.
As of the end of 2018 the total assets of 17 private banks in operation in China reached 637.29 billion yuan, for a yoY increase of 88.48%. 15 out these 17 private banks proved profitable in 2018.
WeBank is far and away the leading private bank in China, with total assets of 220 billion yuan at the end of 2018, and operating revenues of 10.03 billion yuan that year.
Financial data on Chinese private banks as the end of 2018
|No.||Private bank||Operating revenue (billion yuan)||YoY growth||Net profits (billion yuan)||YoY Growth||Total assets (billion yuan)||YoY growth|
|4||Shanghai Huarui Bank||1.093||4.3%||0.327||29.15%||36.261||-7.36%|
|7||Wenzhou Minshang Bank||0.383||24.60%||0.155||50.84%||1.3.517||31.09%|
|8||Blue Ocean Bank||0.424||434%||0.096||18.831||82.58%|
|10||Wuhan Zhongbang Bank||0.507||406.53%||0.075||374.84%||29.305||102%|
|11||Chongqing Fumin Bank||0.393||45.68%||0.053||387.00%||37.002||101.60%|
|12||Meizhou Hakka Bank||0.198||186.14%||0.05||308.65%||12.677||91.43%|
|13||Anhui Xin’an Bank||0.142||278.38%||0.02||4.026||60.14%|
|14||NewUp Bank of Liaoning||0.207||—||0.013||17.509||368.91%|
|15||Jiangsu Suning Bank||0.45||223.19%||0.004||1778.84%||32.371||115.30%|
|16||Fujian Huatong Bank||0.174||14.28%||-0.081||4.236||2.86%|