AUGUST 2017 ISSUE
THE ASIAN BANKING MONITOR w www.rfigroup.com t twitter.com/RFiMediaGRB
ECONOMIC & REGULATORY
08 Bank of Thailand tightens control on credit cards
13 Sale of CBAâ€™s branch to Vietnam International Bank
18 Alibaba to invest more in Lazada
Welcome to the August 2017 edition of the Asian Banking Monitor – a newsletter designed to give you a quick update on news and trends within the Asian banking market. We cover movements in all areas of the market – economics and regulatory, retail banking, priority and private banking, and technology. In the August edition, Thailand makes headlines with the Bank of Thailand introducing new controls on credit cards by limiting both the amount of credit available and number cards issued to the mass market customer to instil greater financial discipline. On the technology front Ant Financial of Alibaba signed a partnership agreement with the city government of Fuzhou to help facilitate a “cashless society” alliance via onboarding of tier 1 merchants and payment of transactions through Alipay. The focus of our insights piece examines the exciting introduction of Video Teller Machines in Singapore’s highly competitive market via leader
DBS that will certainly shake-up engagement with customers and add a new and exciting dimension to the overall banking experience. We will continue to track how this is likely to impact satisfaction and drive advocacy. Finally, in the priority banking space Singapore continues to consolidate its position as a key wealth management hub in the region as the U.K.’s St. James’s Place expands its footprint in the country. On the other end of the spectrum Australia’s CBA rationalized its presence in the Vietnam market through the sale of its Ho Chi Minh City branch to Vietnam International Bank. Kind regards,
Mobasher Zein Kazmi Editor/Research Director – Asia firstname.lastname@example.org D +65 6597 7027 I M +65 9035 6307
CONTENTS AUGUST 2017
05 RFi GROUP INSIGHT Would you facetime your bank?
07 SPECIAL FEATURE RFi Group & Fuji Xerox Exclusive Breakfast Event
ECONOMIC & REGULATORY
Bank of Thailand tightens control on credit cards
18 TECHNOLOGY Alibaba to invest more in Lazada
Sale of CBA’s branch to Vietnam International Bank
PRIORITY & PRIVATE BANKING St. James’s place to expand its presence in Singapore
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RFi GROUP INSIGHT
FACETIME YOUR BANK? WORDS ANDREW KIM
ecently I wrote about the barriers of entry and the competitiveness of the Asian banking market, identifying the most oligopolistic markets in Asia. Singapore was at the top of the list, with the top 4 local banks dominating 94% of the share in main bank relationships, and a lot of that is due to the dominance of DBS which, along with its no frills brand POSB, continues its push as the innovative leader. Its recent launch of the Video Teller Machines (VTMs) offers customers the option to get face time with their tellers via a live video stream and conduct their banking in a soundproof private booth. Tasks will range from the basic statement
requests and balance checks down to the more advanced obtaining internet banking security tokens as well as instantly receiving debit cards applied for. The introduction of the VTM is not just a digital banking development, but itâ€™s also a move that combines one of the most hyped communication medium to the most widely used banking channel. If you were lucky enough to attend RFi Groupâ€™s Global Digital Banking Conference in London, Sydney, or Singapore last year, you would have learned from the likes of, Facebook, Samsung, Citibank, and other global players, about how excited they were about the future of technology, especially the mobile platform and video.
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RFi GROUP INSIGHT
Anyone who uses social media will have noticed the developments on their Facebook and Instagram accounts which allow users to share, sometimes live, videos of themselves to their friends and followers. We’re seeing more travellers and bloggers capturing their moments with collages of pictures and videos. Long distance relationships with family and friends are all touching base using video chat over the internet rather than settling for traditional voice calls. Even in the office, we’re using video conferences and sharing screens to project our ideas more effectively and efficiently.
Singapore, with the top 4 local banks dominating 94% of the share in main bank relationships, is due to the dominance of DBS which, along with its no frills brand POSB, continues its push as the innovative leader.
The infusion of video’s heightened personalisation and service with a key distribution channel like the ATM supports the concept of collaboration across business units contributing to a rising net promoter score (NPS) in Asia’s banking industry. When looking at the NPS for ATMs among main banks in Singapore, DBS/ POSB is already ahead of the pack, driven by the number and locations of its ATMs. Loaded with infrastructure, it will be interesting to see how much of a boost the enhanced engagement provides to DBS service metrics and business performance. Even more interesting will be the next wave of video banking technology that comes after this and where it may end up as it’s on the ATM now but I have a feeling it may end up in my pocket.
ATM NET PROMOTER SCORE By main bank
Source: RFi Group Singapore Priority & Retail Banking Council 16H2
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On the third of August at the historic Fullerton Hotel in Singapore, RFi Group & Fuji Xerox presented successful strategies for engaging with omnichannel customers at an exclusive breakfast event. RFi Groupâ€™s research revealed that 90% of Singapore banking customers are omni-channel, using both digital and traditional channels on a regular basis and that banks who successfully engage with their customers through 6 or more channels, have 10% higher satisfaction scores, than those engaging via just the one channel.
90% of Singapore banking customers are omni-channel, using both digital and traditional channels on a regular basis.
RFi Groupâ€™s General Manger for Asia, Gerald Ferguson presented the research and best practice examples that addressed insights into managing the challenges that banks face in meeting retail banking customer expectations for omnichannel service. For more information, please contact Michelle Ho, Client Services Manager, RFi Group at email@example.com.
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ECONOMIC & REGULATORY
Economic and Regulatory
Bank of Thailand tightens control on credit cards WORDS CORENE LIM
n view of higher default rate on debts among young borrowers, the Bank of Thailand (BoT) intends to limit the credit line to 1.5 times of credit cardholders’ monthly personal income for those earning 30,000 baht per month or below. The central bank will further cap the number of credit card for this group to 3 cards per person to improve their financial discipline. This step was taken following data from Thailand’s National Credit Bureau which shows that 50% of 30-year-olds and 20% of 29-yearold are unable to fulfill their outstanding debts in Thais bear loans. The institution also sees a higher incidence of bad loans of 3.7% every year. Bank of Ayudhya (BAY), one of Thailand’s biggest banks mentioned that this regulation
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will affect their credit card take-up and will need to adjust their business plan to generate income from other sources. Once the new regulatory framework is in place in the coming months, the interest rate charge for credit card loans will also be reduced to 18% from 20% per year. RFi Group data from 17H1 Retail Banking Council showed that among Thais 35-year-old and below, the share of credit card customers has increased by 5% in the past six months. Particularly among banked customer between 18-25-year-old there has been an increase of 7% in credit cards ownership within the same timeframe.
ECONOMIC & REGULATORY
China opens to foreign investors WORDS ANQI LI China recently opened its $10 trillion bond market to foreign investors. The Chinese bond market is the third largest in the world after the United States and Japan. This “bond connect” platform aims to promote development between Hong Kong and Mainland China. It allows qualified investors in Hong Kong to buy shares of Chinese-listed companies and Chinese firms to buy Hong Kong traded stocks. This can diversify the investor base and increase market size and depth. According to RFi Group’s data in H1 2017, only 19% of Chinese consumers hold overseas banking products, with 65% of this pool holding them in Hong Kong. In H1 2016 and H2 2016, 57% of overseas banking product holders held them in Hong Kong. This number increases to 65% in H1 2017. The opening of the Chinese market may potentially see more investment flows between China and Hong Kong.
PROPORTION WHO HOLD OVERSEAS BANKING PRODUCTS IN HONG KONG Retail banking customers who hold overseas banking products 100% 80% 65%
40% 20% 0% H1 2017
Source: RFi Group China Retail Banking Council (16H1, 16H2 and 17H1)
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ECONOMIC & REGULATORY
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ECONOMIC & REGULATORY
Indiaâ€™s new GST tax is now effective WORDS GRACE CHRISTIANTY Following the announcement of Indiaâ€™s tax reform early this year, the new tax system on Goods and Services (GST) is now effective and has been rolled out starting 1st July 2017. Under the new tax reform, GST will be applied as a single national sales tax instead of as several centrals and state levies. Previously goods will be taxed multiple times and at different rates according to where the goods were produced and delivered to. Under the new tax scheme, different goods will be taxed at a different level. Untreated goods such as fresh vegetables and fresh milk will not be taxed while tea, coffee, sugar will be taxed at 5% and packed food such as bottled juices will be taxed at 12%. The highest tax for consumables applied for carbonated drinks and tobacco
which will be taxed at 28%. The response has been mixed with small business owners feeling uncertain about how much they should charge for the final price since there are different tax level for different things. However big manufacturers such as Colgate-Palmolive India welcomed the new scheme since it cuts multiple taxes. The company saw rise in their Colgate toothpaste sales after the toothpaste was charged at 18% national tax compared with 22%-26% levies and state tax earlier. According to RFi Group data, the consumer sentiment in India has been declining in the past six months. The demonetisation followed by the new tax scheme could explain this sentiment. It may take few more months to restore the sentiment.
HOW CONCERNED ARE YOU ABOUT YOUR CURRENT FINANCIAL SITUATION? 1 - Not at all concerned
5 - Very concerned
40% 20% 0%
Source: RFi Group India Retail Banking Council
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ECONOMIC & REGULATORY
India’s new GST tax is now effective
Business sentiment rises in Japan
WHICH OF THE FOLLOWING DOES THE BUSINESS PLAN TO DO OVER THE NEXT 12 MONTHS?
WORDS BENJAMIN YEO 60%
Earlier this year, The Bank of Japan’s Tankan survey released its report that mentions business confidence in Japan has reached a three-year high. The Tankan report that involves surveying over 10,000 companies had a key index reading of 17, which beat both the market expectations of 15 and the previous reading of 12. The optimistic prospect comes off the back of improving exports and investments linked to the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. In addition to the two drivers mentioned above, the optimistic sentiment is also a result of the booming tourism in Japan. This has been reflected by the land prices in Japan whereby major cities in Tokyo and Osaka have risen by over 10 percent. The rise in land prices was from increased demand for retail spaces and hotels as Japan hit a record number of visitors of 24million in 2016. Based on RFi Group research, 38% of business owners are planning for increased revenue in the company year. This is in line with the Bank of Japan’s Tankan survey report on the rising business sentiments in Japan for the coming year.
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0% Increase annual revenue
Source: RFi Group Japan SME Council (H1 2017)
Increase business savings
Retail Banking Sale of Commonwealth Bank Australia’s Ho Chi Minh Branch to Vietnam International Bank WORDS VIVIEN LIM
ustralian-based bank, , Commonwealth Bank Group (CBA), has announced the sale of its Ho Chi Minh City branch to Vietnam International Bank (VIB), one of Vietnam’s leading bank for commercial joint stock. CBA commenced its banking activities in Vietnam back in 2008. Two years later, the bank established a strategic partnership with VIB where CBA acquired a proportion of 20% in VIB’s stake. General Manager of CBA Vietnam, Steve Ellis mentioned that this decision signifies CBA’s commitment to the Vietnamese market by strengthening the partnership with VIB and that it also demonstrates CBA’s confidence in VIB’s ability to continue providing high-quality customer service. The approval of this sale was given by the State Bank of Vietnam and while the value of the transaction was not disclosed, the banks expect the sale process to be completed in the third quarter of this year. CBA will be contacting its customers to ensure a smooth transition of their banking relationship to VIB. Additionally, CBA’s representative office in Hanoi would be retained to serve as a liaison with the corporations, financial institutions, and government agencies in Vietnam.
With the purchase of CBA’s Ho Chi Minh City branch which catered to the needs of about 20,000 customers, VIB will be able to tap on the increased customer base to grow its core retail banking business. According to RFi Group data, VIB currently has a market penetration of 5% in Vietnam’s Retail Banking Sector (Vietnam Retail Banking Council, H1 2017) and with the purchase of CBA’s Ho Chi Minh City branch which catered to the needs of about 20,000 customers, VIB will be able to tap on the increased customer base to grow its core retail banking business.
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Women have been notably spending more on necessities and lifestyle and have spent 129% more on their cards than in 2011 as compared to male card expenditure which rose by 71%.
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Jump in credit card spend by Malaysian women WORDS VIVIEN LIM UOB Malaysia has recently released data which revealed that credit card expenditure by Malaysian women has been increasing at almost twice the rate of men since 2011. Women have been notably spending more on necessities and lifestyle and have spent 129% more on their cards than in 2011 as compared to male card expenditure which rose by 71%.
especially as more women join the workforce.
UOB Malaysiaâ€™s Managing Director and Country Head of Personal Financial Services, Ronnie Lim said that the growth in womenâ€™s credit card expenditure in both discretionary and non-discretionary products and services clearly indicated that more women have greater financial capability and earning capacity,
According to RFi Group data, the average total credit card spending in the last month among Malaysian consumers is MYR 4,572 (Malaysia Retail Banking Council 2016). Further, within a short span of 6 months there has been an observable increase in the credit card usage in almost all the scenarios as shown in the chart below. Evidently, the increasing credit card usage in these scenarios have been mostly contributed by female credit cardholders in Malaysia and should the trend persist, it can be expected that there will be a rise in credit card usage in other payment scenarios as well.
CREDIT CARD AS MEANS OF PAYMENT USED % By scenarios H1 2016
60% 50% 41%
10% 0% Big bills
Dining & Entertainment
Purchases at smaller retailers
Online shopping at domestic websites
Source: RFi Group Malaysia Retail Banking Council 2016
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This fund is intended to support the bank’s credit expansion in the market. The bonds are scheduled to be listed on the Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX) in August this year and will be available in three series - A, B, and C.
CIMB Niaga to raise IDR 1 billion fund by issuing bonds WORDS GRACE CHRISTIANTY CIMB Niaga, Indonesia’s arm of Malaysia-based bank CIMB will be raising funds by issuing bonds with the total value of IDR 1 billion (equals to USD 75,000). This fund is intended to support the bank’s credit expansion in the market. The bonds are scheduled to be listed on the Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX) in August this year and will be available in three series - A, B, and C. The A series will have 370-days tenor, B series will have 3 years tenor and C series will be the longest with 5 years tenor. The bank’s treasury and capital markets director, John Simon said that these IDR 1 trillion bonds is the second part of the bank’s shelf registration bond to generate fund. The first one was issued in end of November last year. According to RFi Group data, CIMB Niaga holds around 13%-14% of banked population in Indonesia and its share has been steady in the past few years.
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High sales for new flats in Hong Kong WORDS GRACE CHRISTIANTY Sales of new flats in Hong Kong has exceeded a figure of 10,000 units in the first 2017, the highest in six-month figure since 2005. According to Hong Kong Land Registry, the institution has seen a 6% increase in residential property transactions within past one month alone. Aggressive home financing schemes offered by developers as well as higher mortgage loans offered by banks have boosted sales of these new flats. Ricacorp Property, one of the largest real estate brokers in Hong Kong, estimated the sales could also exceed 10,000 units until the end of this year. The broker’s spokesperson mentioned that consumers’ concern of possible rise in interest rate in the coming months will keep the sales high. According to RFi Group data from Hong Kong Retail Banking Council in H1 2017, one out of four of banked consumers in Hong Kong (26%) indicated that having their own home was one of their most important financial goals. Further, the Group’s data shows that incidence of home loan ownership has been increasing steadily in the past one year from 17% to 21% in the past one year. With home owning as being one of the top financial goals for Hong Kong consumers, the demand for housing by the local buyers will remain high as estimated.
INCIDENCE OF HOME LOAN OWNERSHIP IN HONG KONG Trended
15% 10% 5% 0% H1 2016
Source: RFi Group – Hong Kong Retail Banking Council (H1 2016, H2 2016, H1 2017)
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Technology Alibaba to invest more in Lazada WORDS ANQI LI
libaba is planning to raise its investment in Singaporebased startup, Lazada, to US$2 billion. This will increase its stake in Lazada from the existing 51 percent to 83 percent. Alibaba recognises the strong growth potential of Southeast Asia’s e-commerce market. The additional funding from the Chinese e-commerce giant will help to strengthen Lazada’s foothold in the region, especially against strong competitors like Amazon. In addition, it also allows access to a wider range of merchants and Alibaba’s logistics resources. According to RFi Group data in H2 2016, the allocation of spending on credit card online in some of the Southeast Asian countries ranges from 15% to 20%. As online shopping is poised for growth in the region, there will be greater opportunity to shift online payments towards credit cards. ALLOCATION OF CREDIT CARD SPEND Among credit cardholders Online domestic websites
Online international websites
Domestic physical stores
Overseas physical stores
Source: RFi Group Retail Banking Council (H2 2016)
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According to RFi Group data in H2 2016, the allocation of spending on credit card online in some of the Southeast Asian countries ranges from 15% to 20%.
Delta Insurance - Singapore’s first Lloyd’s cover holder commences operations WORDS CORENE LIM Delta Insurance Singapore, an insurance technology firm which specializes in technology and cyber risk protection has started operations in Singapore. It is the first local firm to offer cyber security insurance under Lloyd’s Coverholder model in Singapore. Supported by Allied World’s Lloyd Syndicate 2232, Delta Insurance can access capital from Lloyd’s members to underwrite risks. Delta Insurance can also streamline the application submission, quotation and policy issuance processes so that the time taken for product purchasing process can be reduced from traditionally 1 month to less than 24 hours. Delta Insurance is looking to work with fintechs, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and technology companies. Currently, Delta Insurance distributes through brokers and insurance agents. The firm plans to expand to other distribution channels to help companies safeguard against cyber risks. According to RFi data, only one out of five of SMEs in Singapore (19%) hold business insurance in H1 2017. SMEs with greater annual global revenue are more likely to hold business insurance to mitigate the risk of unforeseen damage in their businesses while a quarter of SMEs with annual global revenue of more than US$ 2 million hold the same.
SINGAPORE SMES THAT HOLD BUSINESS INSURANCE Among credit cardholders 40% 30%
10% 0% Up to US$100k
US$400,001 US$2 million
More than US$2 million
SMEs with greater annual global revenue are more likely to hold business insurance to mitigate the risk of unforeseen damage in their businesses.
Source: RFi Group Singapore SME Banking Council (H1 2017)
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Ant Financial cooperates with Fuzhou to develop cashless society WORDS CORENE LIM Ant Financial, the financial arm of the Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has clinched an agreement with Fuzhou to develop a cashless society, the third city to develop a cashless shopping environment together with Ant Financial following Hangzhou and Wuhan. This cashless development will be supported by an alliance which has been formed between Ant Financial and over 20 institutions including Fuzhou Municipal Bureau of Commerce and State Grid Fujian Electric Power Company. The campaign is expected to help over 90% of merchants and businesses in the city to operate cashless by the end of this year. Currently, 95% of the taxi fleet, 85% of supermarkets and convenience stores and 80%
of restaurants accept mobile payments and customers between 20 and 40 years old make up 80% of all these users. In the partnership, Ant Financial through its Alipay payment service will aid the city in a few areas of development, namely transport, commercial and government services. These developments will set up the infrastructure which allows residents in Fuzhou to shop and travel simply with a smart phone. According to RFi Groupâ€™s data on payments, Alipay is among the top 3 most important payment methods in China, with 74% of the banking population having used it in the last 12 months.
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PRIORITY & PRIVATE BANKING
Priority & Private Banking Satisfaction of priority banking customers is primarily driven by 3 factors, reputation for the product, wealth management products and services as well as wealth management advice.
St. Jamesâ€™s Place to expand its presence in Singapore WORDS BENJAMIN YEO
ingapore has been one of the fastest growing private wealth management hubs in recent years. In the wealth management survey report released by The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) late last year, Singapore boasted an annual growth of assets under management (AUM) of 9%, in comparison to the global average of 1%. Additionally, Singapore enjoyed a 5-year AUM compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14%, with a significant portion of the AUM being sourced within Singapore. The influx of funds has led to increased attention of fund management companies internationally. Earlier last month, St. Jamesâ€™s Place (SJP), a UK headquartered wealth management firm announced that they will be expanding their presence in
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Singapore. Since inception in 2014, SJP has more growth by over two folds and the expansion will provide the capacity for the growth of local advisory services. In line with the expansion, SJP has recently appointed a former British diplomat, Sir Alan Collins as senior advisor to their International Steering Committee. According to RFi Group data for Singapore Priority and Retail Banking Council (2016H2), satisfaction of priority banking customers is primarily driven by 3 factors, reputation for the product, wealth management products and services as well as wealth management advice. By expanding the local office in Singapore to offer local advisory services, SJP will be able to better cater to their high network clients in Singapore.
PRIORITY & PRIVATE BANKING
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I D E N T I F Y T H E U N TA P P E D P O T E N T I A L A N D C A P T U R E T H E O P P O R T U N I T Y W I T H I N O N E O F T H E FA S T E S T G R O W I N G B A N K I N G S E G M E N TS I N T H E W O R L D . W H I C H M A R K E TS A R E P O I S E D T O C A P T U R E T H E M A J O R I T Y O F T H AT G R O W T H AND HOW WILL THEY DO IT?
G LO B A L I S L A M I C B A N K I N G CO U N C I L
88% of Malays in Malaysia are open to the idea of subscribing to Islamic banking products and services – about 2 in 5 Malays will only choose Islamic banking products and services
More than 1 in 2 of Islamic banking participants in Indonesia
Middle East and becoming a global norm. Whilst consumer appetite is there, global acceptance will fundamentally require increased effort from key industry stakeholders, including regulators and market participants, to standardize best practices. In response to the growing interest in Islamic Banking globally, RFi Group recently launched the Global Islamic Banking Council. The Global Islamic Banking Report a key deliverable of the council looks at the changing attitudes and behaviors of consumers towards Islamic Banking products and features, the competitive landscape in key markets across Asia as well as the opportunities and trends shaping the industry. For further information, or to purchase this report, please contact:
are highly likely to advocate their Islamic banking provider
Ritin Malhotra Business Development Manager – Asia email@example.com +65 6597 0926
About Financial Insights
About RFi Group
Financial Insights is a specialist division of RFi Group, providing timely, detailed, primary research based reports on banking, wealth and payments. Available off-the-shelf Financial Insights reports are a convenient and robust source of knowledge for the financial services industry.
RFi Group is a global intelligence and digital media provider focusing exclusively on financial services. We specialise in data and information gathering, customer based insight generation and business decision support for the world’s leading financial service providers. RFi Group combines global intelligence and local knowledge to provide insightful, valuable and actionable insights across our 44 key global markets.
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