Top honour for Bank ABC at Global Finance Awards

Bank ABC has won two distinguished trophies at Global Finance’s The Innovators Awards-2023.

The bank’s innovation and digitisation centre, ABC Labs, has been named as one of ‘the World’s Best Financial Innovation Labs’, a recognition given to leading financial innovation labs that are driving the digital revolution in the global banking industry.

With its ground-breaking initiatives and a forward-thinking, agile innovation approach, ABC Labs was commended for driving transformative change in the region and beyond.

ABC Labs, led by Bank ABC’s Group Innovation function, was launched in 2019 and operates from a cutting-edge facility, with state-of-the-art digital tools. The labs run an extensive and unique enterprise-wide innovation programme aimed at disrupting traditional banking models.

The ABC Labs team closely collaborates with customers, regulators, technology providers, financial institutions and fintechs across the bank’s global footprint to foster growth and transformation within the industry and broader economy.

Bank ABC has also been presented with the ‘Top Innovations in Finance’ award, an accolade that underscores the bank’s outstanding Digital Transformation Programme which delivers an unparalleled, personalised banking experience to corporates and individuals.

The bank’s ongoing digital transformation journey is dedicated to building a digitally-empowered, sustainable ‘bank of the future’.

Guided by an agile, Cloud-first digital innovation strategy, the multi-year initiative is designed to drive further operational efficiencies, disrupt legacy banking models and systems, and enable the bank to achieve digital leadership by truly transforming the way banking services are delivered to its customers.

Bank ABC Group chief executive Sael Al Waary said: “Innovation is at the heart of our strategy as we continue our digital transformation journey to build a more intuitive and sustainable bank of the future. We are honoured and proud to accept this prestigious recognition for our world-class innovation lab, ABC Labs. This award acknowledges our commitment to staying ahead of the curve and embracing emerging technologies such as AI, blockchain and data analytics. It is a testament to our commitment to delivering enhanced customer experiences and encourages us to continue to invest in our innovation and digital initiatives.

“I would like to sincerely thank Global Finance for this recognition, our board of directors for their continued support for our ambitious innovation and digital transformation journey and, thank you to our dedicated employees across the group for embracing innovation and continuously working to deliver the bank’s vision for the bank of the future.”

Global Finance’s publisher and editorial director Joseph Giarraputo notes, “Bank ABC continues to put digital innovation as a key strategic priority in providing world-class customer focused banking initiatives. It is playing a key role in the Gulf region’s first blockchain-based cross-border instant payment solution. Through ABC Labs, the bank is collaborating with several central banks, including the Central Bank of Bahrain, in studying and launching central bank digital currencies and is now scaling up its payment services for corporate clients.”

Since inception, ABC Labs established the digital architecture and agile methodologies to enable the bank’s strategic objectives. These steps enabled the launch of ila Bank – a revolutionary digital mobile-only retail offering, and the development of ‘Fatema’ – an emotionally intelligent AI-powered digital assistant.

Bank ABC’s digital transformation programme has resulted in multiple ground-breaking digital deployments. Most recently, the bank introduced a regional-first digital corporate onboarding service, reducing the account opening process to less than a day. It is also digitising its supply chain finance, documentary trade finance and cash management businesses.

In its 11th edition, Global Finance Innovators Awards celebrates entities that consistently identify new paths and design innovative tools in finance. The winners were chosen by a distinguished editorial board in consultation with experts in the innovators’ areas of focus. ABC Labs excelled across the selection criteria and emerged as a winner of the Financial Services Company Labs category.




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