Having recorded over 12 million mobile transactions annually — equivalent to $2 billion — BIBD is ready to capture the growing digital economy with the launch of its BIBD NEXGEN sub-branch yesterday, a new digital banking concept which is mobile-led and customer-centric.

“We are seeing an exponential growth [in mobile transactions]… We are moving towards a $6 billion volume going digital,” the bank’s Chief Operating Officer Dr Gyorgy Ladics said, acknowledging the relevance and impact of digital banking.

Dr Ladics added that this is one of the “most important channels” for BIBD, noting that the BIBD NEXGEN is projected to be a $3 billion business. In March this year alone, more than one million transactions were carried out on BIBD’s mobile platform.

The new sub-branch, located at The Mall Gadong, utilises latest  technology, data analytics and customer insight and aims to provide financial inclusion for the unbanked and under-served segments.

“Banking services will be more accessible through the BIBD NEXGEN platforms which will de-cash the economy with emphasis on mobile-led transactions through enhanced interconnectivity,” the bank said in a statement.

YB Dato Dr Hj Mohd Amin Liew Abdullah (C) during the launch of BIBD NEXGEN yesterday. Photo: Ubaidillah Masli/ The Scoop

During a press conference, the bank’s head of retail banking, Hjh Nurul Akmar Hj Md Jaafar said that by becoming more accessible to the “unbanked”, it is hoping to capture transaction patterns.

“This will be very valuable information to the country and can help us in how we can grow our economy,” Hjh Nurul said, adding that with the bulk of mobile transactions being recorded, the bank is confident that Bruneians are really embracing technology.

In a bid to increase financial inclusion and mobilise the sultanate’s digital economy, BIBD is also looking into cross-industry collaborations. Soon, it will make cashless transactions easy for retailers as well as micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the country by adopting QR codes and other similar technologies.

BIBD NEXGEN will also soon feature a marketplace where home-based businesses and MSMEs can bring their products and services to a wider market.

Despite its aggressive move in adopting and bringing to the fore the latest digital banking technologies, it is quick to remind that information security remains top priority. “We take security very seriously, it is never a secondary agenda,” Hjh Nurul stressed.

On hand at the launching of BIBD NEXGEN yesterday was its chairman, the Second Minister of Finance YB Dato Seri Paduka Dr Hj Mohd Amin Liew Abdullah. According to the minister, the move was in line with the central bank’s (AMBD) Financial Sector Blueprint 2016-2025, towards a sustainable financial ecosystem.

“This signals that both Brunei and BIBD are prepared for digital revolution and transformation into a more advanced digital economy,” he said.