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Mobile banking a competitive advantage for Emirates NBD

Mobile technology is forging a link between banks and their customers. Emirates NBD is cleverly taking advantage of smartphone penetration in the UAE, and its digital-only bank Liv is the latest example of this trend.

Emirates NBD’s launch of a digital-only bank and host of new services signals a proactive move to adapt to the growing popularity of mobile-based services, supporting the UAE’s development towards a digital future.

Via Liv, Emirates NBD app users can open their bank account instantly. The use of real-time analytics to provide insights on transactional history and spending patterns, as well as budgeting and goal-setting tools, will enable consumers to self-serve the management of their finances through their mobile.

As well as displaying the usual transactional data and personal financial management insight, the user interface also provides access to added-value information on non-financial interests, such as deals and discounts on meals, fitness tracking data, and updates on new events and openings. Liv will partner with consumer brands such as Zomato and Fetchr to offer this content.

With this approach, Emirates NBD is attempting to build loyalty and engagement by increasing its utility to consumers beyond basic banking into leisure- and lifestyle-related activities.

Mobile has become an essential banking channel for consumers, particularly those in younger age groups. With 97% smartphone penetration in the UAE, R&D for improved mobile apps should be a focus now as this could be an opportunity for differentiation – especially among younger customers.

As per our 2016 Retail Banking Insight Survey, mobile banking is already in regular use across most age groups in the UAE, with younger families the most frequent users (perhaps due to its convenience) while post-family consumers are more reluctant. However, new innovations in this space highlight a rapid growth opportunity for mobile as a channel.

Launching a digital-only bank is therefore a clever move by Emirates NBD. Not only does it clearly differentiate the bank from its rivals, it also opens up a new way of engaging with mobile enthusiasts.

For more information on this topic, please contact Resham Karira at