With the growing emergence of FinTech firms in the region, the bank sector is expected to go through some significant changes over the next few years. Not only does this wave of change come with a lot of opportunities, but also some alarming risks. Renowned personalities of the banking sector gathered at a seminar organized by the Dubai Chapter of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) on Saturday, to have a detailed discussion on the issue.
According to Albawaba, the Head of Liv. Digital bank from Emirates NBD Mr. Jayesh Patel thinks that digital banks are growing in numbers in major markets of the world like the US, India and the UAE.
"There is a massive emergence of new fintech and platforms that are going to disrupt our industry. There are quite a number of digital banks working in different markets. Many firms struggle to launch a digital solution, largely deciding of 'what' they will do. Instead, they should focus on 'why' they are going digital," said Patel.
"Fintechs want all the customers but that is not going to happen because they have to partner with big corporate to get customers," Patel also added while talking on the "Fintech and Blockchain - unblocking fences" seminar.
The founder and the Chief Executive Officer of Alchemy Digital Solutions, Mr. Abe Karar thinks that it is possible that the footprint of the bank branches might go down in the upcoming years, but they won’t disappear entirely due to digital banks.
"Even if you go digital, you still need a physical presence in one form or the other," he said in reply to a question at the seminar.
The chief guest of the seminar was Mr. Mishal Almarzouqi, a veteran engineer, entrepreneur and innovator. Presentations were also delivered by Mr. Anand Prakash Jangid, the Managing Partner at Anand Jangid & Associates, and Arti Sogani, the Practice Head of Digital Transformation at Finesse.
The president of ICAI Dubai, Mr. Mahmood Bangara said that Fintech is such an evolving industry that brings technology and finance closer.
"Fintech applications will also be built on blockchain technology and it uses the Internet, smartphones and any other software dimensions. It facilitates ease in transactions and the world is emerging that the banking and financial process moves around fintech from a basic application of making transactions, issuing instructions," he pointed out.
"Fintech grows for several processes including decision by applying the relevant AI and robotics processes. Since everyone will be doing banking or financial services, surely fintech will also become relevant to every individual," Bangara said in his opening speech at the seminar.