The Central Bank of Bahrain has announced the launch of FinHub 973, a digital fintech lab in the region.
The platform was launched in cooperation with the Bahrain Economic Development Board, Bank ABC, ila Bank, BENEFIT, National Bank of Bahrain (NBB) and Bahrain Islamic Bank (BisB).
Through an AI-powered global fintech marketplace, FinHub 973 aims to connect financial institutions in Bahrain and the region to fintech startups across the world.
Regulated by the Central Bank of Bahrain, the digital lab will also offer matchmaking and crowdsourcing capabilities, which will help contribute to the design of effective fintech solutions.
FinHub 973 will be powered by Fintech Galaxy’s FinX22 platform, which is a cloud-based open innovation platform. The FinX22 platform will offer an open banking API sandbox that enables fintech startups to develop, test and deploy fintech solutions.
FinHub 973 will enable financial institutions to organize virtual hackathons and challenges to accelerate innovation and business growth.
The platform will also provide content on the fintech sector financial and the relevant laws and regulations in Bahrain through an interactive chatbot.
Speaking on the launch of FinHub 973, Mr. Rasheed Al Maraj, Governor of the Central Bank of Bahrain, said:
“We are pleased to launch the FinHub 973 digital fintech lab that will support a seamless transition into digital banking operations, while accelerating the transformation towards an AI-powered digital economy. The launch of FinHub 973 reaffirms the vision of the Central Bank of Bahrain to expand infrastructure in financial technology, unlock innovation opportunities, and introduce new and innovative financial products to the market.”
The launch of FinHub 973 follows the central bank’s recent initiatives to promote innovation in the Bahrain financial sector, including the launch of the regulatory sandbox in 2017, establishment of a dedicated Fintech and Innovation Unit at the bank, and issuing regulations for Open Banking, Crypto-asset Platform Operators, Digital Financial Advice (robo-advisory), Cloud Computing and Insurance Aggregators.
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