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Standard Chartered Bank Goes Mobile

Standard Chartered Bank Bangladesh has launched two mobile apps, SC Mobile Bangladesh and Good Life, recently. The goal, as the bank states, is to ensure convenience and better service experience for its users in a world which is increasingly going mobile. This is part of a larger trend where an increasing number of financial organizations are embracing tech in the country, thanks to growing finTech awareness.

The SC Mobile Bangladesh app will allow users to manage their banking from anywhere and anytime along with bill payment and checking statements while Good Life app will help customers to get information about their nearest restaurants and shops, a potential competitor to a host of food-related apps in the country.

  • Standard Chartered, being a multinational bank, is one of most forward thinking banks in the country. It introduced online banking in 2004, the first bank to do so. It was also the first bank to launch ATMs and many other banking services in the country.
  • Mobile is eating everything. According to SCB, currently, 80% of SCB online banking takes place through mobile phones.
  • Through Good Life app, SCB users will be able to access privileged services at over 3,000 outlets in Bangladesh, Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Thailand, Brunei, the United Arab Emirates, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, and Vietnam.

Why this matters: During the launch program that took place at Westin Dhaka on Sunday, SCB CEO Abrar A Anwar said something really profound about the future of banking and financial services. As Mr. Anwar said: “banking on a mobile platform is the thing for the future. The convergence of financial services and technology is inevitable. I will not be surprised if people stop visiting banks in the future.”

This is an important statement coming from a CEO of a bank. Banking is one of the highly regulated industries which makes it one of the less dynamic and innovative industries as well. Due to the regulatory modular nature of the business, it is also equally hard to disrupt the financial industry. However, things are changing fast. Globally, finTech companies are slowly taking over smaller parts of financial services unbundling the entire model and the industry. For instance, bKash in Bangladesh. It has made P2P money transfer just a matter of a tap and now is trying to break into mobile payment market along with a host of other companies that are eating away banks’ share of business. This, it seems, is just the beginning, there is more to it.

A growing number of banks are now launching mobile apps. The interesting thing about SCB app is that it not only allows you to pay bills, or manage your account or conduct banking from anywhere anytime but through Good Life app it is also offering extra benefits which essentially streamlines its privilege offers as well.

As we recently reported, mobile is eating Bangladesh. It is not only changing how we communicate, it is changing a host of industries starting from how we consume and shop. That said, space and attention both are in short supply when it comes to mobile, in order to succeed mere presence is not enough you have to make sure that your app does something that is indispensable.

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