The United Arab Emirates is a country where technology is playing an increasingly important role in the lives of its citizens. It’s also a population split between extreme wealth and an active working and student body, served by an increasingly competitive banking sector that is flooding the market with a wide range of financial products. All these factors add up to a young population with a need for open discussion and clarity about their financial future to ensure their financial stability and prosperity.
In recent years, Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB), a leading financial institution in UAE has invested heavily in innovative banking solutions as part of a digital transformation strategy fulfilling the market needs of its Generation Y customers.
This year ADIB has been named an 'Innovator in Islamic Finance' for 2020 by Global Finance magazine, marking the fourth consecutive year that ADIB's innovations have been commended by the publication's judging panel.
One of ADIB's digital banking services that contributed to the award was Moneysmart.ae, the online community that connects users to share financial knowledge and experiences.
Serhat Yildrim, Chief Digital Officer at Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank, said: "The Innovator in Islamic Finance award comes in recognition of our efforts to further enhance our digital capabilities to ensure customers enjoy a seamless, safe and straightforward banking experience. This is underpinned by the significant growth we have seen across our digital banking platforms. In the first quarter of 2020, we saw a 17% increase in average daily downloads of our app and a 20% increase in daily transaction. The growth is not just limited to our retail customers and we've seen over 30% growth on the corporate side."
Moneysmart is a community-focused platform that would attract both digital natives and those keen to learn more about digital, and then help them develop their levels of financial knowledge and avoid common financial mistakes, while providing the exceptional level of service that ADIB prides itself on as a bank that truly cares about its customers. The resulting platform offers its customers an easy and seamless registration process. It provides a free bank card delivered upon registration to the customer’s door by Fetchr, Dubai’s app-based delivery service, a unique benefit enabled by the use of APIs that facilitate integration with third-party services, boosting customer convenience. Other benefits include a free Visa card, free account with hybrid feature of saving and current account, and money transfer capabilities including P2P, domestic and international. It’s also Sharia-compliant, the first such digital platform in the region500.
To achieve this, ADIB looked for help from a provider that had already proven itself with a combination of a community-based approach, digital delivery, a focus on excellent user experience and innovative financial products. With its over 800,000 members, reputation as a technology game-changer and expertise in open banking and APIs, Fidor was a natural choice.
The solution Fidor provided is a unique and inclusive digital banking ecosystem that introduces and reinforces positive financial behaviours and literacy, while optimising user experience within a truly supportive environment. Built on the Fidor digital banking platform, it plugged straight into ADIB’s existing core banking system and uses APIs for the mobile app and third-party integration, built-in collaboration with IBM.
The result is Moneysmart, a revolutionary mobile and web-based banking platform that promises to help ‘you and others live a happier life through smarter financial choices.’ Moneysmart provides its customers with a winning combination of knowledge exchange on personal finance, a blog offering helpful advice and thought leadership about trending topics in financial services, smart deals including discounts and exclusive offers, product reviews, the opportunity to co-create and influence financial product development and bonuses and rewards for active participation.
Knowledge exchange topics range across all areas of personal finance, including how to obtain loans, dealing with debt, cryptocurrency investments, buying property, reading recommendations about financial topics, advice about the most effective use of the platform and more. For example, the smart banking discussion group invites participants to ‘discuss how we can further improve our smart banking offering to better reflect your needs and wants. All ideas are welcome!’
Similarly, the co-creation feature asks users, ‘Got an idea for a new financial product, online banking service or any other innovative product that you would like to suggest to the Moneysmart community? We would love to hear from you here as we’re always looking for ways to help you live a happier financial life. ‘ Current suggestions range from existing product enhancements to new apps and innovative types of loan and many of them receive enthusiastic comments and highly engaged feedback. Discounts available currently include fashion, jewellery, car rental, casual and fine dining, including special deals, and more. Why paying more when you can get offers right there within your app. These user-oriented and driven features help Moneysmart to stay fresh and relevant, crucial for keeping the attention of its target demographic and for attracting new generations of potential customers.
‘Moneysmart brings openness to the world of personal finance and is in line with ADIB’s objective of giving guidance so that people can make better financial decisions,’ says Philip King, head of retail banking at ADIB.
The heart of Moneysmart is the community it creates because of its transparent communication between members who can express opinions, address concerns, consult experts and share new ideas, making it not just a completely immersive and customer-driven environment, but one that develops alongside its customers, ensuring that it continues to reflect and meet their financial needs and interests today and going forward.
Higher customer engagement and customer acquisition can be achieved seamlessly through our Fidor Community Platform, which builds recognition for every bank that obtains it. Does your bank want to accomplish a similar feat?