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Middle East's Best Bank Awards

Regional: Best Digital Bank 2020

Mashreq Bank

UAE-based Mashreq Bank has a good future claim for the overall award for best bank in the Middle East – but that accolade will have to wait.

Thanks to the impressive leadership of chief executive Ahmed Abdelaal, it is a constantly and impressively evolving financial institution, whether in the field of investment banking or private banking. It is in digital, however, that Mashreq really excels.

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. Mashreq is a true innovator: during our awards period, it was lead arranger on the region’s first ever fintech sukuk, completed on the Wethaq platform under the watchful eye of the Dubai Financial Services Authority. Its integrated online banking platform, MashreqMATRIX, continues to help larger companies complete transactions faster, cheaper and in a more secure manner.

Ahmed Abdelaal, CEO, Mashreq Bank.jpg
Ahmed Abdelaal, Mashreq Bank

At the heart of Mashreq Bank’s digital strategy are two pillars. The first, Neo, is a full-service digital bank, with 100,000 customers. The second, launched in September 2019, is NeoBiz, the UAE’s first digital service focused wholly on small and medium-sized enterprises. Customers can open an account in 20 minutes, the bank says. It also reckons that roughly half of all new business accounts opened since then have been completed online, via NeoBiz.

Mashreq is determined to cling to its lead in digital. All KYC is being digitized. Its mobile wallet, Mashreq Pay, which incorporates multiple loyalty programmes, continues to grow in popularity. It was the first bank in the region to integrate with Apple Pay and Samsung Pay, and it lets corporates view and track every trade transaction in real time, and in a single window.

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