Monday 25, September 2017 by Georgina Enzer

ADGM Partners with ADIB to enhance Abu Dhabi’s fintech ecosystem

Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), the International Financial Centre in Abu Dhabi, today marked a new partnership with Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB), a leading financial institution, to seek opportunities to collaborate and consult on initiatives to promote the growth and development of the FinTech ecosystem in Abu Dhabi and the UAE.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by Sagheer Mufti, Chief Operating Officer at ADIB, and Richard Teng, Chief Executive Officer of the Financial Services Regulatory Authority (FSRA) of ADGM, and witnessed by witnessed by HE Ahmed Al Sayegh, Chairman, ADGM and Mr. Khamis Bu Haroon, Vice Chairman and Acting CEO of Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank.   Under the terms of the MoU, ADIB will partner with the FSRA across a range of Shari'ah’a-compliant FinTech-related initiatives. This partnership further complements ADGM’s ongoing innovation and FinTech commitment to support entrepreneurs, start-ups and members of the Abu Dhabi Regulatory Laboratory (RegLab) --- a regulatory framework that offers a controlled, supportive environment for FinTech innovators to develop and test their products and services with the regulator.

Sagheer Mufti, COO at ADIB, said: “Both ADIB and ADGM have placed considerable focus and investment into supporting FinTech companies which can deliver additional value for our customers. The long-term success of the FinTech ecosystem in the UAE will be achieved through collaboration between established financial institutions and FinTech entrepreneurs, underpinned by a robust and supportive regulatory environment. Formalising our partnership with ADGM puts in place a framework through which ADIB can leverage its own experience in developing innovative technology to support FinTech start-ups.”

ADIB and ADGM will also explore and participate in joint innovation projects on the development and application of technologies such as digital and mobile payments, blockchain and distributed ledgers and artificial intelligence. Both entities will also seek to develop local FinTech entrepreneurship through mentorship and knowledge transfer across incubation, accelerator, academic and internship programmes.

Richard Teng, CEO, FSRA, of ADGM, said: “The collaboration with ADIB represents our efforts working with stakeholders to support innovation in a world-class regulatory environment. ADGM and ADIB share common objective in advocating best practise, nurturing and fostering innovation and facilitating growth in our FinTech ecosystem. We look forward to working closely with the ADIB team to develop initiatives and programmes that will capture new business opportunities and expand our FinTech reach locally and globally.”

ADIB continues to integrate pioneering FinTech solutions across its range of banking services. The bank has partnered with Fidor to launch the region’s first ‘community-based digital bank. The new platform is designed to fit the lifestyle of millennial consumers also known as Generation Y, as well as those looking for a digital offering that matches their banking needs. This year, ADIB launched its new generation of digital branch called ‘ADIB Express’, providing customers with access to an array of digital services within the branch environment.

Over 67 per cent of transactions were carried out on ADIB’s digital platforms in H1 2017, including an average of 1.7 million mobile transactions every month. As part of its digital innovation strategy, the bank has also recently revamped its internet banking platform to enable customers to conduct their banking online in a simpler and more intuitive manner across all devices.

As the FinTech Hub, ADGM has established and in the process of finalising about eight FinTech bridges with key international financial centres and jurisdictions in the recent six months.  These cross-border partnerships enable ADGM to maintain a practical, open and inclusive global FinTech centre that has been serving the communities in Abu Dhabi and the greater MENA region.

As an IFC, ADGM has accomplished notable milestones and established strategic partnerships to bolster the FinTech ecosystem since March 2016. It is the first IFC in the MENA region to establish a dedicated and open regulatory framework in November to licence FinTech stakeholders and launched a Regulatory Laboratory (Reglab) to accelerate FinTech innovation. 

ADGM will be hosting its first FinTech Abu Dhabi Summit on 22-23 October 2017.  

As a global FinTech Hub, ADGM continues to enhance its international network with the MENA region, Asia, Australia, US, UK, Europe to facilitate greater access to markets, capital and regulatory recognition for Fintech players. ADGM actively engages its stakeholders, forge partnerships and collaborations to develop a conducive and effective FinTech ecosystem. For more details of the ADGM’s FinTech Abu Dhabi event, visit www.fintechabudhabi.com to register interest.

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