Standard Chartered recently announced it is planning to apply for a virtual banking license in Hong Kong. According to South China Morning Post, Standard Chartered will be the first traditional bank to seek the license locally to operate fully online without any physical branches.
Standard Chartered’s plans to obtain a virtual banking license comes just weeks after the Hong Kong Monetary Authority announced details about the virtual banking license and revealed that August 31st is the deadline for the first batch of applicants. Deputy Chief Executive, Arthur Yuen, reportedly stated that nearly 50 companies have expressed interest in applying for the virtual banking license. Samir Subberwal, Regional Head of Retail banking in Greater China and North Asia at Standard Chartered, stated:
“Technology is at the heart of our bank’s strategy and we have embarked on a ourney to take a step beyond and go truly digital.”
Subberwal went on to note that he believes customers want more simplification in the way they manage their finances:
“This is why we believe the launch of a virtual bank will give clients the choice of going completely digital for their everyday banking needs. Standard Chartered has been and will continue investing in technology that focuses on distinguished full digital experiences.”
Mary Huen, Chief executive of Standard Chartered Hong Kong office, added:
“We are supporting a new era in smart banking that will help clients better understand their financial position and how to achieve their financial goals. We are developing our virtual bank with innovation and client needs in mind, so that their banking experiences cater to their digital lives. As a note-issuing bank in Hong Kong and a bank of almost 160 years’ history, we are committed to promoting financial inclusion and Hong Kong as an international financial centre.”