Published: February 1, 2017
For the past nine years the Middle East Banking Awards have been highlighting the many accomplishments and achievements of the region’s commercial and investment banks, Islamic banks, private banks, asset managers and brokers, and leading law firms. During this time, our winners have seen both good and bad times, more and less volatility, and all the while we remain impressed with their ability and dedication to develop not only their own business, but also the larger financial industry.
It is comforting to know that the confidence we have in the Middle East’s banking sector is reflected in recent comments from Moody’s, which are detailed in their GCC banking outlook report for 2017. The rating agency’s report is titled ‘stable outlook reflects resilience to persistent economic and funding pressures’, which by and large sums up the general state of affairs. Our winners demonstrate this ‘resilience’ guided by strong management, focused on implementing sensible cost controls, and, what is so very important, motivating professional staff to meet the always increasing expectations and needs of clients.
To accomplish the last task, banks must adopt an ethos of continuous improvement, and incorporate innovation as a back drop to all activities. In this year’s awards process we received from winners and non-winners alike, by and large, excellent submissions detailing how the region’s banks are revolutionizing their businesses and embracing digitalization. Islamic finance’s rapid growth driven by customer appetite and the public’s growing acceptance and interest in Islamic products in the region is a very exciting trend. And, one that has added to the burst of new products and services seen across all the countries covered in these awards.
We trust that you will find the country-by-country overviews of the performance and key happenings of our winners of interest, and find value in the comments provided by some of our winning firm’s executives. Congratulations to our winners on your many achievements, and for those repeat winners, on your sustainable leadership both across the region and in your home markets.