Bangladesh: Nagad Nears Getting License to Operate Digital Bank

Nagad, a Mobile Financial Service (MFS) provider in Bangladesh, is on the verge of launching a digital bank. The company expects to receive its license from the Bangladesh Bank, the country’s central bank, in the coming months.

Sadaf Roksana, co-founder and executive director of Nagad Ltd., will lead this transformative initiative aimed at offering enhanced convenience to millions in Bangladesh, thereby decreasing their dependence on traditional banking facilities.

Earlier, Nagad had applied for a digital bank license, in response to the Bangladesh Bank’s invitation for applications. The central bank has set forth guidelines intended to bolster and expedite financial inclusion and create employment opportunities for the youth in the IT sector.

This move towards digital banking by Nagad comes at a time when the global financial arena is rapidly shifting to digitization, propelled by technological progression and evolving consumer behaviors.

With her considerable experience in the fintech sector, Sadaf is well-positioned to guide Nagad’s digital bank to fruition. Upon procuring the digital bank license, Nagad aims to introduce its customers to cutting-edge and user-friendly banking solutions.

Sadaf expressed her enthusiasm, stating, “We are on the cusp of offering digital banking services to the Bangladeshi populace,” emphasizing Nagad’s commitment to promoting financial inclusion and ensuring widespread, affordable access to financial services.

According to Sadaf, Nagad is well-prepared for the launch and will commence its services shortly after obtaining the necessary authorization.

Nagad’s digital banking platform is set to roll out a variety of services. A significant highlight includes providing low-interest, collateral-free loans for small businesses and farmers.

These individuals currently rely on high-interest loans from informal lenders, sometimes with rates as steep as 40% per day. The company’s intent is to integrate these sectors into the formal financial system.

To determine the creditworthiness of an individual, Nagad has developed an AI-driven credit rating system. This system will assess transaction-related data from public domains using one’s National ID and mobile number, Sadaf Roksana shared.

As Nagad progresses with its digital banking plans, anticipation is building around Sadaf Roksana and her team’s efforts to steer Bangladesh towards a more inclusive and digitized financial landscape.

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