StanChart launches Islamic banking in Kenya
Nairobi, March 19, 2014
Standard Chartered Bank has launched its Islamic banking offering in Kenya under the brand name of Saadiq as part of its regional expansion plans.
With this launch Kenya becomes the first market for Standard Chartered’s African footprint for Islamic banking.
“Saadiq” - which means Truthful in Arabic - represents Standard Chartered’s Islamic banking proposition offered across the world to Muslim and non-Muslim clients.
Afaq Khan, the chief executive officer for Islamic Banking, Standard Chartered Bank said: “If the Islamic market starts growing in Africa at the level it is growing globally today, it will become a significant part of the financial system in Africa as well.”
Global figures indicate that the Islamic finance market is growing with investments now worth over $1trillion. Locally, the Islamic banking industry has grown in under five years to account for 2 percent of the total banking business in Kenya.
“This shows Kenya’s huge potential and opportunity. As a major international bank with a long-standing heritage and a global network, Standard Chartered is ideally placed for a prominent role in this ever-expanding market,” added Khan.
Raheel Ahmed, the regional head of Consumer Banking for Middle East, Pakistan and Africa, said: "As the service gap between Islamic and conventional banking narrows and as the Islamic Banking range of products and solutions develops and gets more sophisticated, Islamic Banking is increasingly appealing to non-Muslim clients too as a non-interest, profit sharing alternative to conventional banking products."
"Our entry into Kenya is a stepping stone for our strategy to expand our Islamic Banking offering across the African Continent presents a high growth opportunity for Islamic Banking products. We chose Kenya as a response to the increased demand from the Bank’s customers there for Shariah-compliant Banking services," he added.-TradeArabia News Service