Bank Asia is set to form a neobank, a completely new concept for Bangladesh, within December, in a move that can change the face of banking in the country broadening the financial inclusion.
According to a recent Dhaka Stock Exchange disclosure, the customers of the platform will settle all transactions by way of using apps and online modules to be installed by Bank Asia, a leading PCB in the country.
A neobank is a kind of digital banking operation where no branch is required as the service would totally be delivered online.
Introduction of such banking model in the country is the maiden initiative by any bank in Bangladesh, said a statement of Bank Asia.
"Neobank will give a boost further to the financial inclusion. This will also help mobilise deposits and loan disbursement,"
Neobanks can be called fintech firms that provide digital and mobile-first financial solutions payments and money transfers, lending and different other banking services.
Although clients now do banking by way of using the internet and apps, their accounts are with the branches.
Under the neobank platform, accounts will not have any attachment to the branch.
Developed nations have already adopted the method in order to build a cashless society. The platform will accomplish all types of microcredit and small lending, deposit, fund transfer and card payments.
The platform will be popular among the tech-savvy youths because of its innovative and cutting-edge ethos, the Bank Asia officials hoped.
The coronavirus pandemic has already created a strong habit of banking through the use of online platforms and app-based solutions for many people.
Internet and app-based banking has been on the rise as people across the globe now maintain social distancing practices.
It is hoped that the neobank solution would help spread the practice of a cashless society to every part of the country like developed nations.
The Bank Asia will apply to the Bangladesh Bank to get approval to run the neobank platform in the quickest possible time.
Bank Asia will hold 51 per cent shares of the company and the rest will be controlled by the foreign companies.
Some foreign fintech companies will be included to form the subsidiary company.
Small lending like retail and microcredit ones will be given out without any bureaucratic complexity when the platform will get a tempo.
The lender will set up a strong call centre to provide services to clients of banking solutions.
The employees of the call centre will resolve all types of clients' problem and their curiosity as well.
"Clients will get all-out support from the call centres, instead of visiting the branches physically" .
The lender will ink agreements with different payment gateway service providers like MasterCard and Visa for the implementation of the solution.
"We have taken a plan to reduce setting up new branches. And the latest virtual banking platform will help to a great extent for the implementation of the plan."
Bank Asia, which started its operation in November 1999, is running its operation through 129 branches.
The bank has so far recruited 3,600 agents, which have been providing banking services to more than 3.0 million clients.
As of June this year, the bank disbursed Tk 23,500 crore (235 billion US dollar) in loans and mobilised deposits of nearly Tk 27,000 crore (270 billion).