Integrated Report 2021

Customer support activities

We support our Customers’ development and wish to be a partner for them. Therefore, we participate in support programmes and launch our own initiatives that inspire our Customers to undertake further ambitious goals.

In 2021, our slogan for communication with the SME and Corpo Area was „We think change”. To effectively support companies in the transforming business reality, we learn to respond to changes with an innovative product offer.

Polish Development Fund (PFR) Shield for SMEs

In 2021, the Bank provided access to applications that enable the settlement and cancellation of PFR subsidies for SMEs in its online banking system. PFR experts conducted free webinars for entrepreneurs. They explained how to settle and cancel Shield 1.0 and 2.0 subsidies. The Bank’s advisors and Customer Service experts took part in PFR Shield training organised by the Bank to support Customers in applying for and settling subsidies.

Free conferences and webinars for entrepreneurs

The Bank’s experts talked to companies about the benefits and opportunities that result from the energy transformation. They explained how to use EU funds in the process of planning and financing investments.

The Bank’s experts talked to entrepreneurs about safety online. They explained how to secure computers and web browsers, as well as how to avoid cyber attacks.

During the conference, addressed to SMEs, we discussed ways of protecting companies from market risk. We shared our experiences as the leader of export factoring in Poland. We support our Customers – not only by financing their receivables, but also by taking over the risk of contractor insolvency.

The series of conferences was held as part of the Bank’s Foreign Trade Programme which was launched in 2018. During the lectures and discussion panels, participants talked about key exports-related topics. In 2021, we focused particularly on e-commerce and online export, which has become a key challenge and development opportunity during the pandemic. Three meetings were devoted to the British, German and Chinese markets. We invited experts from PwC, PAIH and the Chamber of Electronic Economy as well as entrepreneurs from AB, X-press Couriers, Motos, Domator24 and Diablo Chairs to participate in the programme.

Cooperation with international Customers

The Bank is a member of commerce chambers and supports the organisation of events for international companies. It actively participates in the life of the French, Belgian, German, Italian and British communities.

Family Business Initiative

The Bank is a strategic partner of the Family Business Initiative Association (hereinafter: FBI). As part of the cooperation, the Bank promotes Polish family businesses. It supports the education of the employees of such businesses and the development of the Polish economy. Thus, the Bank emphasises how highly it values Polish family companies.

Initiatives supporting the development of the Food & Agro sector

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  • UNGC 8
  • UNGC 9

The BNP Paribas Group has extensive international experience in providing services within this sector and is the European leader in financing the leasing of agricultural machinery. We are also a leader in financing the Polish Agri-food sector. We offer responsible products and services. We support the sustainable development of our Customers. We popularise a responsible approach to food production and help to implement appropriate tools.

Agronomist, is the Bank’s proprietary initiative and is now two years old. It gathers sector knowledge and provides access to a wide set of professional IT tools supporting agricultural entrepreneurs and processing companies. It contains information on the agri-food sector, both locally and globally.

In 2021, we focused on the need for a green transformation of the sector. As the Bank of Green Changes and a member of the Cool Farm Alliance international business and science consortium, we support all initiatives aimed at mitigating climate change and striving for environmental neutrality. Hence, we introduced the following changes to the platform:

Entrepreneurs can now calculate their environmental impact. They receive the result in the form of a carbon dioxide equivalent. Currently, calculations for field crops and dairy production are possible. Soon it will be possible to estimate the water footprint and emissivity of livestock.

With its help, Customers can easily find banking and insurance offers on their own. To use the search engine, one must answer two questions that narrow the offer to three products.

We have expanded the functionality of the price module to include the dairy market. Data for the entire module is provided by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

We have launched the Lawyer’s Tips section, where we use simple language to explain the intricacies of legal regulations. We discuss issues that affect primary production and processing.

  • Food & Agro Sonar – the Bank’s analysts and other experts comment on current and important issues for the agri-food sector,
  • Food Cabinet – interviews with the heads of the largest processing companies in Poland.

Shortly, we plan to post materials and launch tools that will support regenerative farming. Our goal is to shorten the supply chain. We will encourage farmers to build relationships and support each other, as we believe it leads to greater resource efficiency. is known globally. Entities from all over the world wish to learn from its creators and implement similar solutions in their markets.

"Local flavours" campaign

In October 2021, the Bank launched a pilot promotional campaign entitled „Local flavours” in cooperation with the Allegro Lokalnie sales platform. Our Customers had the opportunity to sell groceries online, without commission.

Thus, we promoted the idea of online food sales; we wanted to provide farmers with new distribution channels. We also wished to provide Allegro Customers with good-quality natural food, produced in accordance with the idea of sustainability.

Educational and information initiatives

We are a leader of agro banking, and we are well acquainted with the nature of this business. We know what an agribusiness should focus on when seeking external financing. We want this process to be as safe as possible and to serve the development of our Customers’ businesses. Therefore, in 2021, we continued our information and education initiatives. In addition, we adapted our product offer accordingly.

Farmers are gradually implementing the European Green Deal. This requires significant changes – the technology must be adapted to the new reality. Education is critical at this time. The European Green Deal is, above all, an opportunity for development in new areas. Farmers have a chance to improve their products’ quality and become competitive on world markets. The farm-to-fork strategy assumes that by 2030 organic farming will have a 25% share in the sector, the use of fertilisers will decrease by 20%, of pesticides by 50%, and the sale of antibiotics used in livestock farming by 50%.

We want to help Polish farmers prepare for these challenges so they can take full advantage of the new opportunities. Therefore, we commissioned a baseline study on Polish farms. In June 2021, we published a series of video podcasts discussing the results of this analysis and issues related to the EU strategy.

The podcasts can be found on the Spotify platform and on our website.

In November 2021, we launched an e-learning programme in cooperation with the ASAP Sustainable Agriculture Association. We discussed the topic of financial stability on a farm. The training was free and consisted of four parts. The participants learned how to make good decisions in cooperation with a financial institution. They also learned to manage farm finances sustainably – maintaining financial stability and reacting to possible risks adequately.

We provide free training on a dedicated website.

The Food & Agro Conference develops the formula of the previous Agroconferences, organised by the Bank since 2006. It is an international meeting of representatives of the agri-food ecosystem. The participants discuss key issues that affect their companies.

In 2021, the conference was held in hybrid form. Its title was „Ready for the European Green Deal”. The meeting was entirely devoted to the green transformation in the food production sector.

In 2021, the Bank organised the third edition of a contest for the best BA or MA thesis on modern agriculture and agri-food processing. This edition was entitled „The World Needs Agro-Graduates”. The Polish Association of Sustainable Agriculture (ASAP) was a competition partner.

Fifty-one excellent theses were submitted, and as many as five authors ended up on the podium – the jury awarded three 3rd prizes, ex aequo. Additionally, five ideas received special awards.

The competition aims to promote innovation, sustainable rural development, and ecology. We popularise initiatives that support agrarian societies and farms, the natural environment, the agri-food industry and sustainable food production.

More information about the competition is available here.

Partnerships for sustainability in the agri-food sector

The Bank has been supporting the development of Polish agriculture for many years. We offer products tailored to the needs of our Customers. In addition, we undertake both internal and external initiatives. We are a member of the Cool Farm Alliance industry consortium, a partner of the Polish Association of Sustainable Agriculture (ASAP) and the Coalition for the Development of the Bio Food Market.

Partnerships for the sustainable development of the agri-food sector are described in the Environmental perspective chapter.

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