Published: February 6, 2019
Welcome to EMEA Finance’s Middle East Banking Awards 2018. This awards package celebrates eleven years that we have recognized the achievements of the region’s retail and investment banks, asset managers, and brokers. These awards afford special attention through our Middle East-level winners to banks and financial institutions that are pushing the industry forward with new and innovative products and services, excelling in investment banking, increasing the number of banked individuals, and giving back to the community through their corporate social responsibility programmes and financial inclusion efforts.
As you will read, digitisation requires more than just commitment, it takes money and resources to make it happen. Many of our winning banks are fully onboard with this fact, and some are dedicating hundreds of millions of dollars and hiring new-types of staff to transform themselves, and in a pursuit to find competitive advantage in the digital revolution enveloping us all.
‘Real time’ is a phrase that seems ubiquitous. It is what customers crave, and eventually what must be delivered. The challenges to reach this at-all-times-nirvana can seem daunting. There are considerable risks inherent in the operation of IT systems, managing and storing data, collaborating with myriad partners, and pursuing and financing new products and services. However, we report on much progress that is being made, and the successful roll out of stunning new services. There is more to follow judging by our reporting.
In capital markets, there were considerable headwinds, some of them external and at times some of them specifically related to events in the region. The volatility of the oil market persisted, at times opening a window for issuing and at other times closing it. Despite these factors, Middle East credits remain attractive to regional and international investors alike, and a few remarkable corporate issuances, like DP World’s manage to make a splash.
This year’s Middle East Banking Awards 2018 editorial feature covers banks operating in ten countries acknowledged for their achievements in the past year.
Our country-by-country reports explore the performances of most of our winners, including some exclusive insights from key individuals at the firms regarding their strategies for growth and proudest accomplishments from the course of 2018. Congratulations to all our winners on a fantastic year.