Bahrain - Bank ABC’s retail arm ila Bank has launched Bahrain’s exclusively digital, Shari’a-compliant banking offering for individual customers, ‘alburaq.’

This Islamic banking experience from ila Bank brings customers a host of intuitive Islamic banking products and services at their fingertips, through ila’ state-of-the-art mobile app.

‘alburaq’ is backed by Bank ABC’s long-established Islamic finance subsidiary, Bank ABC Islamic. Recently named the ‘Best Islamic Financial Institution in Bahrain in 2023’ by Global Finance, Bank ABC Islamic has been been at the forefront of cutting-edge developments in the Islamic banking space since the 1980s.

Islamic banking

Commenting on ila’s foray into the Islamic banking space, Bank ABC’s Acting Group CEO, Sael Al Waary said: “Bank ABC revolutionised the retail banking landscape in Bahrain with the launch of our digital mobile-only – ila Bank back in 2019. We are now merging the deep Shari’a-compliant banking expertise of our Islamic finance arm with ila’s disruptive digital capabilities to offer consumers a first-of-its-kind, extremely personalised digital Islamic banking experience through ‘alburaq’.”

“By introducing this purely Islamic account from ila, we endeavor to offer Bahrain an all-inclusive banking experience that caters to the country’s diverse market, with a wide range of banking products that meet varying customer preferences, enabling us to further bolster financial inclusion in the country. With alburaq, ila now offers strictly Shari’a-compliant money management solutions that are fast, convenient, and seamless, empowering our customers to attain their financial goals and aspirations in the manner that best suits them,” added Al Waary.

Existing ila customers can switch to ‘alburaq’ effortlessly via the ‘Profile’ section on the ila mobile app, while new customers can enjoy a fast and seamless onboarding process and simply choose to open an ‘alburaq’ account, a conventional account, or both. Given ila’s integration with the national eKYC system, the account opening process can be completed within minutes by scanning one national ID card, taking a selfie, and answering a few questions.

Multi-currency accounts

Completely segregated from ila’s conventional accounts, ‘alburaq’ provides customers a host of digital Islamic banking services, including multi-currency accounts, all linked to a new alburaq debit card and a suite of day-to-day banking services such as local Fawri, Fawri+ and Fawteer services, international transfers, card control functions and more. The new alburaq account can be linked to Benefit Pay and the alburaq debit card can be linked to Apple Pay, Garmin Pay, Fit Bit pay, and other payment wallets enabled for ila customers.

Customers of ‘alburaq' can also take exclusive advantage of ‘Wakala Investment,’ a product that provides the opportunity to invest their funds for a definite period and earn Shari’a-compliant profit on their investments. Wakala will initially be offered in BD and $ and multiple Wakala Investment deposits can be created according to the customers preference at attractive rates.

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