The spread of the coronavirus has altered significantly business practices worldwide, including trade, investment, and banking. Particularly, businesses are moving further towards more digitalization and online operations, a practice, which is expected to last for a prolonged period.
This shift towards A Digital Economy will provide new opportunities but will result also in emerging challenges for business sectors. This will boost investment commitments by industries that witness operations disruption and force them to adopt new more complicated business models, with heavy reliance on emerging technologies.
On the banking front, shifting into Digital Banking necessitates undertaking business transformation through a series of transformative initiatives that will collectively contribute to creating a new banking landscape. Nonetheless, the inherent risks associated with digital transformation are high, and additional skills are required to ensure a smooth transition without jeopardizing sustainability and growth.
Finally, Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) and Biodiversity are emerging as new concepts and gaining significant attention in light of current developments, and are been integrated into investment selection and portfolio development. While this will result in significant opportunities for business models adopting ESG and biodiversity, it will result in compliance and disclosure challenges.
This Forum will tackle the following topics:
Day 1: Monday 10th of August, 2020
Mr. Wissam H. Fattouh, Secretary General, Union of Arab Banks
Introduction of: “UAB digital Platform Initiative, Vision, Quick Wins, & Roadmap”
Mr. Suleiman Barada, Sr. Advisor & Head of Ecosystem Digital Transformation Unit
Session I: Digital Transformation – A Roadmap
The Digital transformation is fueled by investment commitments made in various industries witnessing disruption & the rise of new business models & revenue streams enabled by emerging technologies. The Arab countries would thrive united by leveraging cross-border investments thereby taking full advantage of the newly established by technological means. The panel would also create a space for multilateral dialogue led by the Arab Banking actors around the establishment of an Open Arab Funding Platform enabled by emerging technologies. Challenges, opportunities, and capabilities needed will be discussed and benchmarked against similar initiatives in other parts of the world, particularly EU.
Session II: Digital Economy Indices – Mandates of the Banking Ecosystem & Regulators
No progress can be made in the Digital Economy without measurement of key indices and constantly trying to improve. This panel will discuss the indicators that must be closely monitored, the contribution and mandates of all the actors involved within the geography of the Union of Arab Banks. The current indices will be reviewed, and a conversation will be conducted on their relevance to the banking industry and the geography of UAB.
Roundtable for recommendations & End of day 1
Day 2: Tuesday 11th of August, 2020
Session I: Investment Opportunities and Concerns on ESG and Biodiversity Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG), as well as Biodiversity are gaining investors’ attention and have already been incorporated in the qualifying criteria of venture selection and portfolio development. There are two sides to this panel, 1) the opportunity ahead to invest in business models that will reinforce ESG and biodiversity, 2) the compliance and disclosure of indicators and metrics that businesses must consider forward to qualify for funding.
Session II: Financial Services Business Architecture Reference Model,Business Model Innovation, and Re-thinking the Operating Model
The customer journeys have changed in many ways in response to the COVID-19 outbreak and will continue to change more deliberately moving forward for a more cashless and contactless customer experience. The panel will discuss how Business Architecture Financial Services Reference Model is best leveraged to introduce those structural changes in terms of new Value Streams, the Capabilities they require, and the technology investments to be made guided by the business lenses that Bus Arch offers. The panel will also discuss how these profound organizational changes are necessitating the design of new human-centered business models as well as re-thinking the Operating Model and the underlying infrastructure.
Roundtable for recommendations & End of day 2
Day 3: Wednesday 12th of August, 2020
Session I: The Rise of the Family Offices – Innovation JV Opportunities for Arab Banks
This panel will establish a conversation between Family Offices and Arab Bankers around the opportunities ahead for jointly pursuing innovative ventures with potential high returns and impact. There are inherent characteristics and strengths in both communities that if combined with the right setup would create endless opportunities. In this panel, we will hear from family officers as well as bankers ideas on the best way to venture for sustainable value creation.
Session II: Future-proofing Financial Services Institutions with Emerging Technologies (Cloud, Distributed ledger, Biometrics, Robo-advisors, BaaS, RPA/RPI)
The panel will tackle Banking in The Next Normal from a technological point of view to bring insight and foresight that UAB ecosystem actors can leverage while designing their technology-enabled future state. Arab Banks can either fear the inevitable open-banking transformation, or they can embrace it, and benefit from becoming the financial solution provider that their customers are so constantly seeking. The panel will particularly address the Cloud adoption as a crucial catalyst. What can we do at an ecosystem level, so the Cloud adoption is achieved through deliberate design rather than in response to disasters? The emerging technologies are making possible the ever-increasing expectations of the digital natives and are creating the driving force that in no doubt will make Open Banking a necessity to look at, sooner rather than later.
Excellence Award for Best Arab Digital Financial Institutions 2020 (2nd edition) Innovation – Inclusiveness – Loyalty – wellbeing
In partnership with the Arab Information & Communication Technologies Organization (AICTO)
Closing Remarks & Recommendations