The idea for the project rose from the friendship between Juan Vicini, José Manuel González Cuesta and Juan José Arteaga, focused on the need to make business. The process to make it a reality took three and a half years, and sealed a business alliance between Banco del Progreso and Centro Cuesta Nacional, in order to launch to the market the end product: Suma CCN- American Express.
Vicini and González Cuesta maintain friendship ties that go back many years, when the executive represented the agricultural division of VICINI and negotiated with the CCN Chairman, the different agricultural products. The CCN Group maintains a solid leader position among the retail sales companies.
The human factor influenced a lot in the Suma CCN-American Express. Juan José Arteada, Exec. VP Business at Banco del Progreso, refers to “the friendship of Vicini and González Cuesta, as something that grew stronger with time. In my case, I have held ties with the González Cuesta family for years, friendship ties from when I was working as a public official during the mandate of the deceased President Joaquín Balaguer”.
Arteaga, together with Vicini and González Cuesta part took in the process all the way till completing the creation of the credit card that offers multiple benefits to the consumers whom use it to purchase products and merchandise in the affiliated establishments. The role of the banking executive was recognized by the CEO for Banco del Progreso, Mark Silverman, over at the launch ceremony for Suma-CCN.
For both groups this was very optimistic and satisfying “the successful alliance between Banco del Progreso and CCN, because this way, consumers will attain significant savings and discounts in all CCN establishments, such as: Supermarkets, pharmacies, gas stations affiliated to American Express”.
Banco del Progreso and CCN executives grade this new credit card as innovative, which will allow users to save in all their purchases. The new plastic gives a 5% discount in all CCN establishments, 2% in all Shell gas stations and pharmacies affiliated to American Express, as well as 1% in all USD$ and DOP$ consumptions. “After positioning the bank once again within the market, we began identifying different areas to begin new journeys. One of these areas we identified was credit cards, which focus more on consumption, and given that Banco del Progreso is the exclusive inland representative for American Express, we decided to promote the brand”.
Hereinafter, executives from both entities worked for over three years, in order to successfully attain the goal of launching the Suma CCN- American Express card to the market. “The effort was worth it. It is a dream come true”. The work groups were formed by: by CCN, Mr. González, Alejandro González, Rafael Medina, Alan Battle and Coni Taveras, commercial manager of Cards. For Banco del Progreso: its president Mark Silverman, Juan Vicini, Juan José Arteaga, and Bernardo Martínez, VP Marketing and Products. “This is a credit card which offers multiple opportunities and benefits, and this benefit will be observed by its users at the end of the month, when their statement arrives. This is important for the pocket economy, because times call now for savings, so many families can maximize their budget availability”, he expressed.
Actually, Banco del Progreso signed their agreement renewal for ten more years with American Express. “When their main executives came to the country, they were amazed at the capacity of the CCN group, of the amount of products they offer and their vast array of allied companies. Immediately, they understood what this could represent and the advantages to gain by entering a consumption market so vast as ours”, said Juan José Arteaga.
A card for everybody
Arteaga commented that since the beginning, the parties involved in the consecution of the credit card “we wanted to eradicate the idea that this was an elitist card, but more so a card available for everyone. It is a practical way of doing business, because we do not think exclusively about the benefits to gain, but we think about the advantages the consumers will have”, explained the VP for Business of Banco del Progreso.
About Banco del Progreso:
Banco del Progreso is a company in the Financial Services portfolio of assets administered by VICINI.
The VICINI family has invested in different economic sectors in the Dominican Republic for over 140 years. VICINI is one of the companies that has contributed significantly to the development and industrialization of the country.