MANAMA: Bahrain Development Bank (BDB) yesterday announced the launch of “tijara” – a new efficient digital banking platform for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) that enables businesses to apply for loans online for the first time in the kingdom.
The launch coincides with the United Nations’ Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises Day (MSMEs), and is a key milestone in BDB’s strategy to drive digital transformation and support the growth of small businesses and start-ups in Bahrain by providing efficient and simplified banking solutions.
The platform will be available to selected BDB customers in the initial phase and will be made available for all customers in the next phase which will be announced later this year and will include additional BDB products and services.
Customers using the new platform will be able to register and undergo biometric verification digitally on the website www.tijara.bh. Additionally, the platform allows customers to apply for BDB’s newly launched ‘Express’ loan, which is a short-term financing of up to BHD15,000 and track the progress of their application online.
Industry, Commerce and Tourism Minister Zayed Alzayani said: “The launch of BDB’s new platform tijara is in line with the ministry’s commitment to cut red tape, empower the SME sector and further improve Bahrain’s business environment.
“The added flexibility of this service will enhance competitiveness by creating an innovative and simple process for SMEs and start-ups to gain access to financial services and financing.”
BDB chairman Khalid Al Rumaihi said: “Over the years, BDB has greatly contributed to fostering an environment that empowers businesses of all sizes, and as disruptive technology continues to transform industries, this platform is another step forward in Bahrain’s digital transformation journey and will continue to support economic growth in the SME sector.”
BDB focuses on financing and development of SMEs in the kingdom and this service comes against the backdrop of last year’s SME boom where Bahrain’s commercial registration numbers soared, and a new wave of regional entrepreneurs emerged out of the Covid-19 pandemic.
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