JIB is driving Jordanian growth through the provision of modern Islamic banking products

JIB is driving Jordanian growth through the provision of modern Islamic banking products

Amman, Jordan. JIB’s important role in supporting economic and social development in Jordan has been characterised by its contributions to community activities& 

Author: Musa Shihadeh, Chairman of the Board of Directors, Jordan Islamic Bank

April 24, 2020

Established in 1978 as a public limited company, Jordan Islamic Bank (JIB) opened its first branch on September 22, 1979. Now, after decades of growth, the bank employs 2,436 members of staff and has ambitions that stretch beyond the world of finance. In fact, we aim to meet the economic and social needs of citizens in accordance with the principles of Sharia law.

With capital standing at JOD 200m ($282.1m), JIB strives to keep pace with the latest technological developments, employing modern banking processes to provide the best Islamic products and services through all its branches and offices. The bank also delivers services through 255 ATMs and offers mobile solutions, including online and SMS resources.

Over a prolonged period, JIB has received many international awards, positive credit ratings and endorsements from several institutions. For example, we received a letter of appreciation from the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) for our commitment to corporate social responsibility projects in accordance with ISO 26000, and obtained an international accreditation certificate in data security and electronic payment card data from the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council.

JIB is leading the way within the Jordanian financial market, providing some of the best mobile banking solutions in the country

JIB ranks first among Jordanian Islamic banks and third among Jordanian banks for assets, deposits, financing and investment. The bank’s important role in supporting economic and social development in the country has been characterised by its contributions to both community activities and broader initiatives pertaining to the national economy. JIB’s experience in social responsibility sets an example for national institutions and other companies to follow as they direct their duties towards areas of community support, particularly those focused on disadvantaged groups.

At your service
Through various charitable programmes – not to mention our social, cultural and voluntary activities, donations, qard al-hasan and mutual insurance funds – we fulfil our duty to customers and the wider community. In addition to providing finance to sole traders and SMEs, we support programmes relating to education, training, safety, occupational health, religious studies, culture, arts, literature, heritage, energy and the environment.

At JIB, we provide customers with added flexibility by accepting deposits in Jordanian dinar and foreign currencies across current, demand and joint investment accounts, including wakalah bi al-istithmar investment portfolios and savings, notice, term and restricted investment accounts. The bank also invests available funds in several Islamic modes of finance: for example, we boast a product for funding the annual Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca (known as the Hajj and Umrah), a product for financing educational tuition, another for supporting the cost of medical treatments and a tourism product for financing trips. Further, we offer a musawamah sale product for financing renewable energy systems, istisna’a transactions, direct investments and the purchasing and leasing of real estate.

JIB provides other banking services too, such as the facilitation of instant money transfers via Western Union, the renting of safety deposit boxes, the issuance of letters of guarantee and the opening of letters of credit. Through our subsidiary Sanabel Alkhair for Financial Investments, we act as an agent for buying and selling shares, as well as issuing investment certificates and other financial papers as a broker at the Amman Stock Exchange. In addition, JIB issues bank cards of multiple varieties, including Visa (Electronic, Gold, Silver, Green and Signature) and Mastercard (Standard, Titanium, Gold, Al Baraka and prepaid).

Currently, the bank’s strong financial position allows it to offer a variety of services. As of the end of 2018, JIB’s total assets (including restricted investment accounts and wakalah bi al-istithmar investment portfolios) amounted to approximately JOD 4.62bn ($6.52bn), with a financing and investment balance sheet of JOD 3.57bn ($5.04bn), total shareholder equity totalling JOD 393m ($554m) and 942,000 active accounts. Today, the bank has some 10,500 stakeholders, including businesspeople and Arab national institutions. Our solid financial footing is a key reason why we have been able to maintain our market share across Jordan over the past few years while constantly striving to improve our performance.

On the move
In the past 18 months, JIB has launched two updated versions of its mobile banking app, which is available on the App Store and Google Play. Providing an exceptional user experience, the native app presents the user interface in either Arabic or English, allowing the bank to serve a wider range of customers. The improved JIB app features extraordinary services such as domestic money transfers, letting individuals transfer money to local Jordanian banks without visiting a branch.

In addition, JIB launched My Finances, a tool that allows customers to more easily review their finances, including all paid and outstanding instalments. The bank’s My Cards service, meanwhile, lets users track all card transactions and limits. At the beginning of 2019, JIB made an extra effort to modernise its mobile banking offering by launching Token Solution, a biometric authentication tool delivered in collaboration with international partners. Token Solution improves the in-app experience for customers, making services more user-friendly and allowing clients to log in using a fingerprint scanner (on Android and iOS devices) and facial recognition technology (iPhone X and iPhone 11 only).

Moreover, Token Solution lets customers forgo the antiquated one-time password procedure for transaction authentication; instead, JIB clients can simply enter a four-digit PIN for authentication and enjoy easier, safer transactions. By providing more advanced – yet easier to use – services alongside well-designed applications, JIB is leading the way within the Jordanian financial market, providing some of the best mobile banking solutions in the country.

JIB is continuously working to develop its services and increase its market share through the expansion and geographical distribution of its ATMs. We are committed to increasing the number of ATMs we offer so that all regions in the kingdom can meet the financial needs of their residents. Through the installation of ATMs over the past 18 months, we have added new services, including the ability to make deposits, receive short account statements, fulfil chequebook requests, make transfers from one account to another and change the user PIN. All of this reflects positively on customer satisfaction while further boosting the bank’s profitability and competitiveness.

JIB is continuously working to develop its services and increase its market share through the expansion and geographical distribution of its ATMs

To maintain a high-quality service, all ATMs are examined annually to ensure they are operating effectively. We also encourage customers to use ATMs as an alternative to physical bank outlets, as this helps improve the efficiency of customer interactions. We believe this will increase customer satisfaction, especially among VIP clients and traders.

Financing a green future
As part of its plan to introduce new and competitive products in the Islamic banking market – meeting the needs of customers and driving financial inclusion in the process – JIB is the first Jordanian bank to offer a 30 percent subsidy for domestic solar-powered heaters. We believe providing this subsidy, which is financed by our renewable energy fund, is the right thing to do and could significantly help in the fight against climate change. More generally, the funding will stimulate the local economy in terms of investment for renewable energy solutions.

Our istisna’a contract, meanwhile, is offered to companies and individuals looking to fund renewable energy systems, whether for industrial, commercial, agricultural or domestic projects. Financing can come through either the renewable energy fund or an agreement signed with the Central Bank of Jordan, which gives preferential rates to SMEs, especially in governorates outside the capital. To make use of this product, customers must first submit an application along with a feasibility study that evaluates the customer financially and fiducially. Then, the client signs an istisna’a contract with the vendor to install the system according to the specified conditions. The final stage requires obtaining approval from the electricity company.

JIB has now been operating for more than four decades. During that time, the bank has adapted and evolved to meet the shifting demands of its customers. As the people of Jordan (and elsewhere) call for more efficient and environmentally friendly services, we will continue to meet that demand while remaining true to our values and those outlined in Sharia law.

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