Peruvian banks have been establishing networks of banking agents, or “cajeros corresponsales” since December 2005. With over 2,400 agents, Peru ranks fourth worldwide after Brazil, the Philippines and South Africa.
Most banks in Peru have tended to use banking agents fundamentally to shift low-value transactions away from the more costly branch channel and to extend the reach of their existing branches. Accordingly, many are located within a block or two of a branch of the same bank. Banks do not charge customers at all for use of the agent channel (and do not allow agents themselves to charge customers either), thus positioning it as the lowest-cost channel. Banco de Crédito del Peru (BCP) is the bank which is experimenting most aggressively with using agents to establish a presence away from its existing retail network. BCP is now creating sales support channel for agents, with some 33 business development people assigned to promote and sell credit among customers within a set radius of an agent.