DECADES OF LEADERSHIP. Former and current members of the CitySavings Board of Directors toast to the Bank’s next 50 years.
DECADES OF LEADERSHIP. Former and current members of the CitySavings Board of Directors toast to the Bank’s next 50 years.

Cover Story

City Savings Bank: 50 Years of Keeping It Simple

April 30, 2016



  • With its theme “50 years of keeping it simple”, City Savings Bank (CitySavings) remains true to its basic philosophy of “Simple is Good”, offering straightforward banking coupled with warm and helpful customer service.
  • Over the years, CitySavings has helped thousands of teachers fulfill their aspirations.

With a simple vision to “help people of moderate means”, Don Ramon Aboitiz and Teotimo Abellana wanted to provide financial assistance to those who contributed to their communities but had no access to banks and banking services. It was this seed of thought that inspired them to open the Cebu City Savings and Loan Association in January 1966. The Association would later become a full-fledged bank with the name City Savings Bank. Today, it operates 100 branches with over 900 team members nationwide.

Celebrating a Golden Milestone

On January 24, 2016, CitySavings held its Golden Anniversary event at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Cebu City in a memorable celebration that honored its past and looked forward to its future using the theme, “50 Years of Keeping it Simple”. Over the years, CitySavings retained its “small bank” personality and followed its basic philosophy of “Simple is Good” while growing its network of branches outside of Cebu.

Having public school teachers as its main customer, the Bank is geared towards making the financing experience easy and convenient for the teachers, ensuring that its unique and signature high-touch service experience is practiced at all levels of customer interaction.

Recognizing the value of teachers as both customers and partners in keeping it simple, CitySavings held an awarding ceremony for the six educators who are making a difference in their respective schools and who are demonstrating the passion for empowering communities through education. They are Ms. Jenelyn Baylon of Oriental Mindoro, Mr. Randy Halasan of Davao City, Ms. Lynn Padillo of Naga City, Ms. Anabel Ungcad of Davao del Sur, Dr. Luisa Yu of Tacloban City, and Dr. Jesus Insilada of Iloilo.

Making an Impact on Stakeholders

CitySavings has helped thousands of teachers fulfill their hopes and aspirations. The Bank’s personal approach became a way for it to be part of the lives of the people they serve.

Melinda Yakit and her husband are both teachers from Catarman, Northern Samar. With the help of CitySavings loans, they were able to send their children to college. Their eldest is now a licensed engineer and the youngest daughter is a veterinarian, who was also supported by CitySavings in setting up her own clinic.

Carmelita Abadiano, an elementary school teacher from Himabangan, Samar is a mother of six children. When her eldest twin daughters went to college, she feared she will not be able to provide tuition for their nursing and education degrees while sustaining her other children who were in elementary and high school back then. With CitySavings’ flexible loan programs, Carmelita was able to send all of them to school.

CitySavings is helping teachers not only through flexible loan programs but also through education-related corporate social responsibility projects. Its team members are among the largest contingent to volunteer annually in DepEd’s Brigada Eskwela project. CitySavings has partnered with the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation for Project Synergy to help transform DepEd partners and teachers nationwide into active leaders. CitySavings has also recently partnered with Weather Philippines Foundation to implement a nationwide roll out of Weather 101 and Tropical Cyclone 101 training to all DepEd regional offices in the country.

Looking Beyond 50 Years

In its 50 years of existence, City Savings Bank has proven that helping people does not have to be complicated. It is in small, simple ways that the Bank continues to have a meaningful effect on the lives of the clients it serves. In his ceremonial toast, CitySavings Chairman Eugene Acevedo expressed optimism at the future prospects of the Bank using its “Simple is Good” business philosophy. “To our cherished teachers and to our beloved CitySavings bankers, thank you for the first 50 years. Here’s to another 50 years of faithful service,” he said.

City Savings Bank Golden Anniversary Teacher Awardees’ Testimonials

Teacher Awardees

“The bank is really committed to serve the teachers and to provide better learning experiences for students. This recognition motivates me to work harder and to inspire fellow teachers to make a difference in the lives of every child under our care. Congratulations City Savings Bank and may you continue helping and nurturing every pupil, every teacher and every Filipino!”
Lynn Zuniga-Padillo, teacher, Naga Central School, Naga City, Camarines Sur

“I am greatly honored and humbled to be awarded a plaque of recognition by CitySavings during its 50th year celebration. The occasion was an opportunity for me to reflect on our important role in the field of education. Once again, congratulations to CitySavings and may God continue to bless you.”
Dr. Luisa Yu, Director, DepEd Region 8, Palo, Leyte

Thank You, CitySavings!


The recognition from City Savings is something I really appreciate. I, together with five co-awardees, was selected through a close nomination. We never knew we were nominated and our achievements were validated.

That night, I really felt at ease with the welcoming smiles of CSB people. The regional area head, whom I first met in Iloilo, approached me and personally congratulated me. Even the ‘big bosses’ reached out to us, awardees, as we posed for photos. I also met that night the head of the Reputation Management, Ms. Paula Ruelan, who really had a good job in turning the program into a world-class production.

Viewing the documentary videos made me realize that CitySavings has surpassed expectations considering its humble beginnings. More than that, it has touched many lives and has been a catalyst of change in the life of its major clientele, the teachers. For me, CitySavings is the most reliable lending institution in times of dire need. I remember the time in 2010 when my sister was hospitalized due to complications from her lupus disease. CitySavings was quick to respond to my financial need. I am very grateful to CSB with its very dedicated and accommodating staff. I am talking about the CSB branch in Iloilo City but I believe, the case is the same with all its branches all over the country.

I have been awarded as an outstanding teacher by other entities but this recognition from City Savings is something special. This came along unexpectedly. I am very thankful for receiving this award and this will always remind me to do more, and to continue inspiring more young minds. I think, the CSB slogan ‘Pagamay-gamay lang’ (little by little) has been my motto as a teacher. Bit by bit, I was able to achieve my goals of teaching and inspiring more lives. I started as an English teacher at Alcarde Gustilo Memorial National High School in Alibunan, Calinog, Iloilo. Little by little, I managed to facilitate learning among my students who were almost IPs and indigents. Little by little, I have produced literary pieces. Little by little, I have been pursuing my advocacy  on teaching and writing about our culture as barrio folks and as Panay Bukidnon people.

All I can say to CitySavings is ‘thank you.’ I am forever grateful for the award you have given me together with my co-awardees. Thank you for being always there to help us, educators. As a gesture of my gratefulness, I pledge before God to continue my legacy of educating the young minds, touching more lives, and cultivating the culture of excellence in teaching and community service.


Jesus C. Insilada,

Ed.D, teacher, Alcarde Gustilo Memorial National High School, Calinog, Iloilo

President Welcome Address

Message from CitySavings President and CEO


Happy 50th Anniversary to my fellow City Savings Bankers!

It is an honor to be a member of this institution and to witness this milestone of the Bank. I am relatively new in the organization having started last February 2013 as Vice-Chairman of the Board and later on, taking over as President & CEO in June 2014.

It was during the same period when a new Senior Management Team was formed and the new strategic roadmap, the 3R (Reinforce our foundation, Realign our expertise, and Rekindle our relationships) was established. With this, the new team is able to continuously achieve its mandate of delighting our primary customers-partners, the teachers.

The journey of the new team and its assimilation with the existing teams became less stressful and more effective due to the cooperation and intervention of the sympathetic, capable and smart people, whom we inherited from our predecessors.

Our incumbency is blessed since the original visionaries, Don Ramon Aboitiz and Teotimo Abellana had laid the groundwork so well. Equally proficient leaders, Eduardo Aboitiz, Jon Ramon Aboitiz, Enrique Abellana and Rene Almendras took over with similar fervor and the latest team from both families composed of Erramon Aboitiz, Mikel Aboitiz, Agnes Abellana Lacson and William Paradies continued with their great management of the Bank. Had the said groups not put their minds and hearts to their roles, CitySavings will never be where it is now.

Fifty years could be a long time for some but based on a common adage that life begins at forty, CitySavings is barely ten years old. With the latest thinking, however, that life now begins at sixty, CitySavings, then, is yet to be born. Simply put, CitySavings has a long way to go with challenges and opportunities coming its way. To reach greater heights, we continue to rely on our competent, persevering and loyal teams. We will remain to be relevant in our niche market by continually living up to our tagline of “Simple is Good” and our brand promise of “Straightforward Banking.”

In closing, let me remind you of a local TV series entitled “Forevermore” which alleges that forever is a myth — “Walang forever”. I disagree with the assertion that in the context of CitySavings, we can disprove such statement. There is forever in CitySavings. Guided by our values of integrity, superior service, teamwork, continuous innovation & assumed responsibility coupled with pure dedication & perseverance, CitySavings is here to stay for the communities we serve… forever.

The best is yet to be! Mabuhay ang CitySavings!

Daghang Salamat,


Catalino S. Abacan

President and CEO, City Savings Bank