Our business model is built around our Purpose of helping to put people on a path to better everyday life. It’s a model that hasn’t changed all that much since we were established in 1880. We listen to our customers and use our experience in the market to develop the best products for our customers’ needs.
PFG is made up of four consumer brands that serve over 2.3 million customers. In the non-standard market, there are all sorts of customers with differing needs. We’ve spent over 100 years working with people who have been turned away elsewhere, so we understand the importance of providing a range of products that factor in and work with these needs.
What this means
At its core, our business model is all about creating and adding value so our customers can enjoy better everyday lives. But how do we bring this model to life?
We focus on developing simple, transparent products with built-in flexibility to help people manage their lives. Our customers often belong to the 20% of UK adults on the lookout for credit products they can’t find with mainstream lenders. We specialise in meeting their needs.
We reach customers in a variety of increasingly digital ways, alongside the traditional face-to-face and partnership introductions through agents and brokers.
We use data and, in some circumstances, face-to-face assessments to work out what a customer can afford. We take into account both their current situation and what their future is likely to hold.
We design our products with responsibility and customer need front of mind. Credit has to be affordable, which is why we build affordability assessments into our acceptance criteria. Even when a credit product is affordable, we understand things can change, which is why we build flexible forbearance options into our products.
The nature of our market and customer base means building and maintaining an open dialogue with our policymakers and regulators is a critical part of our business model. These include the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA), Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Central Bank of Ireland (CBI).
We offer many ways for customers to pay us back and many ways keep in touch, including our call centres, digital communications and face-to-face conversations. In 2020, we introduced Provident Direct, which allows our home credit customers to have their loans paid directly into their bank accounts and to pay us back through a continuous payment authority (CPA).
If customers have difficulties with their repayments, we make contact early and keep conversations open. Empathy is our watchword. It’s the only way to fully understand a customer’s circumstances and offer the most appropriate forbearance option.
Our nearly 5,000 colleagues are a critical part of our business model. Our teams balance the personal touch with technology and data to give our customers positive outcomes and our businesses positive results.
We secure long-term, lower-rate funding through strong relationships with our lending banks, depositors and investors. We generate capital we can deploy towards growing our businesses, serving more customers and delivering suitable returns to shareholders.
We have a full social agenda and community investment strategy. The purpose of which is to support financial and social inclusion through community initiatives, education and debt advice. We support both financially and personally to help these initiatives develop.
Our suppliers are essential when it comes to providing our businesses with the goods and services required to meet our customers’ needs. They play a vital role in our daily operations, so it’s important we develop strong and lasting relationships with them.