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Hot trend: Banking services on social media?

Dubai middle east social media banking finance disruption

Dubai middle east social media banking finance disruption

Most mobile users share their schedules, photos and personal life details on Whatsapp – why not bank on it too? Or so thinks Emirates NBD Bank.

The dynamic UAE bank made waves in the newspapers this week with its decision to launch a banking services moulded to the habits of modern civilisation. After months of test piloting amongst company staff, executives are confident that a bank platform embedded onto the popular app will be a step forward.

“WhatsApp is a simple, reliable and private way to talk to anyone in the world,” sums up Suvo Sarkar, senior EVP of Retail Banking and Wealth Management. “it will lend further simplicity and ease to banking with Emirates NBD.”

The partnership will give customers using Whatsapp the option of checking personal account balances and temporarily blocking or unblocking existing cards. As expected, all messages and systems will benefit from Whatsapp’s strong encryption. To date, there are no plans to venture into money transferring between Whatsapp contacts.

In July this year, Whatsapp embarked on its first banking partnership was South Africa’s Absa Group, a re-brand from Barclays Africa Group. Absa ChatBanking on Facebook Inc’s WhatsApp allows Absa account holders to check their balance, buy airtime and make payments to existing beneficiaries using conversational languages and short commands.

Emirates NBD, which is considered as the leading banking group in the region, is the product of a merger between Emirates Bank International (EBI) and the National Bank of Dubai (NBD). The bank currently operates in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, India, Singapore, and the UK.

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