Are we going to see the writing on the wall in Bahrain too?
I believe so, not of course because ila Bank, a 100% digital bank, has just burst into the scene, rather a case of how long could the banks resist the disruptions happening in the banking industry without their active involvement.
A stronger Fintech industry needs stronger partners from both the financial and technology industry, if not equally at least to a great extent. So far the torchbearers, the likes of Paypal, Apple, Samsung, PayTM, etc are from the technology industry with little or no participation from their financial counterpart. They have been disrupting the market consistently in a world where being assetless has become the new form of asset.
The scene in Bahrain is no different. Banks here are generally slow to adapt to changes unlike the rest of the world. Some of the leading banks don’t even have a proper digital presence ( I meant to say website)! Can we expect these banks to stay relevant for a young and tech-savvy generation? Can they afford to rest on their laurels?
In my humble opinion, Bahrain has been rather slow in innovation front for a decade or so but of late the traits of adaption are visible. I hope the innovation doesn’t stop with ila, it should, in fact, encourage more banks to go digital and perhaps signal the end of Banks as physical entities and pave away to Banking in forms of virtuality.