Gulf International Bank to launch online bank in Saudi Arabia

Friday 9 January 2015 10:37 CET | News

Manama-based Gulf International Bank has revealed plans to launch the first online bank Saudi Arabia.

The financial institution said that it would be an online-only service, with customers making deposits and transfers online and checks to be deposited via self-service machines at branches to be opened across the country.

The service will be open to individuals only and not institutions or companies. Several banks in Saudi Arabia offer online banking services but there are currently no online-only banks in the country.

A recent study by management consultant firm AT Kearney found that despite having relatively low penetration rates for internet banking, the Gulf region has great potential to assimilate new online banking services.

Findings reveal that only 20% of banking customers in the Gulf region have opened online banking accounts, lower than penetration rates in Japan, Korea and the Scandinavia region, for example, where they stand at approximately 70%.

However, internet penetration rates in Gulf countries are comparatively high: 99% in Bahrain, 96% in the UAE, 95% in Qatar and 66% in Saudi Arabia. In comparison, internet penetration in the US stands at 87%, Germany at 89%, the United Kingdom at 90% and France at 83%.

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Keywords: Gulf International Bank, online bank, Saudi Arabia, online banking, Manama
Categories: Banking & Fintech
Countries: World
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