Commercial Bank of Dubai (CBD) has announced its go-live on the UAE KYC Blockchain Platform, an initiative which facilitates secure digital customer onboarding, instant bank account functionality, automated data updates, and sharing of verified KYC (Know-Your-Customer) data between licensing authorities and financial institutions. The market-leading initiative, championed by Dubai Economy as part of enhancing business competitiveness and enhancing the digital transformation of the economy in the UAE, is powered by norbloc, a global leader in enterprise blockchain technologies, through its FIDES Blockchain Platform developed by Norbloc. Norbloc is also part of DIFC KYC platform project with Mashreq bank.
The UAE KYC Blockchain Platform was launched by Dubai Economy and a consortium of six banks in February 2020 and is set to become a nationwide ecosystem for exchange of verified KYC data. The initiative is supported by regulators such as Central Bank of UAE and Smart Dubai who will play a significant role in the network expansion and governance. “Dubai Economy and CBD have in the past fostered a strong and long-term partnership to support ease of doing business for investors and businesses in UAE. We are delighted that CBD is amongst the first financial institutions in UAE to go live on the UAE KYC Blockchain Platform, which now allows licensed investors and businesses to digitally open instant bank account and for banks to receive real-time data updates on their clients,”said Omar Bushahab, CEO of Business Registration and Licensing (BRL) Sector in Dubai Economy.
“The Dubai Economy licences hosted on the Platform account for approximately 40% of all licences in the UAE. The project is in full alignment with the vision of the UAE Government to promote digitisation as well as business sustainability, and provides a seamless experience to investors and businesses seeking to establish themselves in the UAE. We invite other licensing entities, free zones and financial institutions to join and leverage this market-leading initiative that is fully tested and proven to be invaluable and sustainable,” added Bu Shahab.
The UAE KYC Blockchain platform now has CBD along with Emirates NBD, which was the first banking group to go live on the platform, and the ecosystem continues to expand with ADCB, HSBC and RAKBANK scheduled for Q1 2021, as well as the joining of additional banks and free zones. The next milestone will be the official release of the Consortium Agreement that will govern the ecosystem and outline how data will be shared between its members.
Dr. Bernd van Linder, CEO of Commercial Bank of Dubai, said, “We are delighted to be amongst the first banks in the UAE to go live with the UAE KYC Blockchain Consortium, initiated by Dubai Economy. CBD has always been committed to accelerate the growth of the UAE economy and enhance the overall business climate by adopting innovative digital tools and technology and delivering a seamless banking experience, in line with our ‘Default Digital’ strategy. The UAE KYC Blockchain Consortium will significantly improve the customer onboarding journey and facilitate a faster and more secure digital KYC process using advanced blockchain-powered distributed technologies leading to enhanced ease of doing business in the UAE. We look forward to working with Dubai Economy and norbloc to offer SMEs and start-ups a convenient and digital way of opening a business account through the UAE’s first KYC Blockchain Consortium.”
Astyanax Kanakakis, CEO of norbloc, said: “Banks such as CBD have understood that being able to offer frictionless, convenient and digital customer journeys is something that is increasingly expected by their customers. In addition to that, reducing the effort spent on onboarding and KYC means more time and resources can be spent on serving the customers. As the UAE KYC Blockchain ecosystem continues to grow, these benefits will become more pronounced and increasingly expected by customers. The FIDES platform removes data silos that currently exist within and across institutions and in doing so brings in cost savings and delivers a vastly improved customer service, resulting in more efficient markets.”