AlAhli Bank is one of the most significant banking institutions in the Islamic financial sector, which is now the second largest bank in terms of business in the Arab world and its services include Islam banking. holds the majority stake in NC B capital, its investment subsidiary, also located in Saudi Arabia, as well as the largest holding bank in Turkey, TFKB.
In the last ten years, only a few countries can match the volume of remittances registered in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. As for the World Bank, the country received a $ 308 million remittance and sent $ 37 million in 2016. In addition, the market is made up of a mixture of 10 million people and immigrants and is expected to grow further when the SME sector is taken into account.
The decision of the National Commercial Bank to join Ripplenet was influenced by the pilot project recently concluded between Ripple and the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority. Through Ripplenet, the bank will connect to other banking institutions around the world. Initially, the networking program will reach the banks of North America and Asia, starting with Singapore. As a result, the NCB's customer base, consisting of over 5 million individuals, will have access to previously inaccessible services.
Competition From Ripple
At the beginning of this year the open source exchange protocol Stellar received a certification for its blockchain network and its digital currency (XLM) from the Shariyah review. The process, however, was not easy and took almost a year of negotiations to get to. The motivation for this was the enthusiasm to capitalize on the Middle East remittance market. Regarding this, Lisa Nestor, director of the company's partnership, said that Stellar is looking for institutions that facilitate remittances in the Middle East because of the enormous potential of the market.
Before Ripple made their announcement, Stellar had the certainty of a dominant position in the Islamic financial world. Now that Ripple has joined forces with a leading institution (AlAhli Bank), Stellar will have to raise its stakes to remain relevant in the Islamic financial sector. From the consumer's point of view, competition between the two companies will result in a huge improvement in the delivery of services.