Digital solutions provider Codebase Technologies (CBT) is targeting to launch at least 11 software as a service (SaaS) propositions by the end of this year, particularly to serve the Islamic financial sector.
Virtually all sectors have been hard hit by the coronavirus crisis in the past year, pushing entire industries toward adopting technology faster than they would have originally planned. The Islamic finance and banking industry has not been exempt.
“With this focus on cost-cutting as a result of [the impact of] the pandemic, there is a need for SaaS-driven and cloud-based services in the Islamic banking space, and there just isn’t one right now,” Raheel Iqbal, the managing partner and global product head of CBT, explained.
The company is also focusing on expanding further into the Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific, where there are large Muslim populations and a high demand for financial inclusion. When it comes to their clients in these markets, they focus on assisting financial institutions with digital banking roadmaps across their Islamic finance propositions.
“We take a ground-up approach, with a special focus on Shariah compliance. As you know, Shariah standards can vary from country to country and region to region, so we work closely with local Shariah teams to ensure all standards are met,” Raheel noted.
For Islamic financial institutions, the biggest challenge in their transition to digital space remains their struggle with clunky legacy technology. “They are lagging in tech and digital product offerings compared to their conventional counterparts. What these institutions expect from their tech enabler is advice on how to come up with better products and experiences while ensuring Shariah compliance. We help them transition smoothly into digital with their legacy technology into digital in under three months,” said Raheel.
As the market settles into new business practices amid the pandemic, Raheel urges Islamic banks to closely look into the digital onboarding segment of their strategy. “They need to pick up the pace; the demand is high for digital products but customers are still reluctant about getting on board.”