Dubai: Best Digital Bank 2020
The Middle East’s best digital bank is also, not surprisingly, the best digital bank over the past year in Dubai. Mashreq Bank’s digital strategy has been in place for years, driven from the top by CEO Ahmed Abdelaal, as well as by group head of retail banking Subroto Som and group head of corporate & investment banking, Joel Van Dusen.
At the heart of Mashreq Bank’s digital platform is Neo, a full-service online lender with 100,000 customers and counting. Neo is completely digital from end to end, with customers onboarded via the Neo app and the bank’s website. All transactions and communication are completed electronically. Neo has raised the share of customers who engage digitally with the bank on a monthly basis to 65%.
Neo’s success led to the launch in September 2019 of NeoBiz, the UAE’s first digital banking service focused on small and medium-sized enterprises. Business owners can open an account with NeoBiz in less than 20 minutes, the bank reckons.
The data reinforces the strength and popularity of both platforms. Mashreq Bank says that more than half of all new business accounts are now opened via NeoBiz, and that over 80% of all new retail clients are onboarded digitally, via Neo.
A host of other new services are ready to roll out in future, with Mashreq Bank planning to complete all credit card processing and onboarding, and all know-your-customer checks digitally over the next six to 12 months. The bank reckons 80% of new account openings in the first half of 2020 were done digitally, with 97% of financial and 60% of non-financial transactions completed electronically.
The Middle East’s rush to go cashless in theory is a boon to consumers, corporations and commercial lenders alike. But the reality is that it only benefits far-sighted banks with strong digital strategies firmly in place. Mashreq Bank fits the bill.