Coronavirus

 


Gerard Ryan, CEO

Coronavirus has brought unprecedented challenges for us all. These are extraordinary times but it's thanks to our loyal and dedicated teams that we are adapting to continue serving our customers now and into the future.  We are also sharing key lessons learned and applying new practices as we move towards a new normal.Throughout this period, our response to the pandemic has been built around three guiding principles – to protect our people; to prioritise our loyal customers and to protect our business. Having served millions of customers for more than two decades, we provide an important social purpose in our communities – and this will continue. We have made it possible for our customers to make their repayments safely through their agents or our remote collection channels – many of which we’ve developed since Coronavirus struck, thanks to the hard work of our teams around the business.  And our loyal customers also have the opportunity to continue to access the finance they need.  Extraordinary times also reveal extraordinary people and here we're highlighting the many fantastic examples of volunteering and kindness as we pull together to support our families, neighbours and communities. IPF is a resilient, well capitalised and funded business and we will be well-placed to continue serving our customers to meet their credit needs after the impact of Coronavirus subsides.Our statements to the market relating to Coronavirus can be viewed here. 

Protecting our people 

The health, safety and wellbeing of our colleagues is paramount.  

 

Prioritising our loyal customers

We serve a large number of loyal customers and in time of difficulty, as always, we are here to help them.  

 

Protecting our business

We are proactively taking action to protect our business  through this period of uncertainty.  

 

What we’re doing for our customers 

  • We’re a people business and even when agents couldn’t visit customers, we were in contact with them through our agents, our call centre teams, emails, and texts
  • Guided by risk assessment health and safety questionnaires, launched through our new communications app, agents are now revisiting customers in their homes and have been given the appropriate personal protective equipment and guidance to do so safely
  • Our customers have had the opportunity to make repayments if their agent cannot visit thanks to an immense investment of time and effort to develop and launch remote repayment services in all our home credit markets. These include payments by Link, SMS, in convenience stores, online via our websites and card payments through our call centres
  • Our loyal customers have also been able to access other services that they need in these difficult times.  In Poland, for example, we are offering health insurance to customers

What we’re doing for our people

  • Our global “Care Plan” enables all colleagues and agents to work safely and with confidence.  We are talking to our staff and agents so they are well informed, reassured and protected.  We have also provided access to online wellbeing programmes, webinars, podcasts and advice including meditation and exercise classes
  • Our 6,000 colleagues were able to work from home effectively, enabled by the swift provision of the equipment and technology they needed
  • Our teams are volunteering in many different ways to support the communities in which they live

What we’re doing for our communities

  • Provident Romania donated 500,000 lei (around £90,000) to the Dăruiește Viață association to help them build a hospital for those affected by Covid 19 and equip other hospitals across the country with the equipment needed.
  • Provident in Poland donated around 100,000 polish zloty (around £20,000) to five hospitals serving small towns and rural areas to help buy intensive care medical equipment and protective equipment
  • Colleagues in Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary are sewing face masks for doctors, nurses, other medical staff, fellow agents and customers.
  • Colleagues across the Group are offering a helping hand by delivering shopping to customers and neighbours - particularly those who are elderly or ill people for whom leaving home is impossible.
  • IPF Digital colleagues in Spain’s “Estoy Contigo” initiative, meaning “”I’m with you”, are volunteering online to send their support to those in isolation at home or in hospital by sending letters, poetry and recording songs. 
  • Colleagues are supporting foodbanks to enable charities to buy food for those most in need. 

 

Our Heroes

Lina from our IPF Digital business in Mexico has been making food parcels for neighbours who have lost their jobs, but have children and adult family members that depend of them.  Her kindness ensures that they have food on their table during these challenging times.

Ola, Katarzyna and Marzena from our home credit business in Poland are helping customers who can’t leave their homes due to chronic illnesses or disabilities. Ola and her team are regularly shopping for groceries and delivering them to their customers.

Our colleague Ania based in Poland has been sewing face masks for doctors and other medical services teams. Ania belongs to a group called “Warsaw sews masks for medical personnel” which is creating fully professional masks for medics in the region.