According to a convention (No. SPC/01/2011) signed on the January 23rd, 2011, The General Council for Islamic Banks and Financial Institutions (CIBAFI), whose Headquarter is in Manama, and ideas Holding Group, a Bahraini Holding Group providing total business solutions, has entered a long term strategic partnership.
Within the last two decades, the Islamic Finance Industry has witnessed a lot of quantitative and qualitative developments, which necessitated the emergence of supportive institutions for the industry so as to highlight the cultural aspects of Muslims in the field of economics. CIBAFI was established then to support the industry through awareness creation and training, holding conferences, seminars and forums and providing the necessary information, as well as to protect the industry so as to avoid, as much as possible, the obstacles and deviations in the course of the Islamic finance industry.
Due to the essential differences between the Islamic and Conventional finance industry, CIBAFI works towards achieving the objectives of Islamic economics and introducing the economic concepts and meanings in Islamic financial transactions which are contrary to the conventional financial thought that claims neutrality in the perceptions and economic applications in terms of religion and ethics.
While the industry grows, IT solutions that fulfill the industry needs found to be slow moving, leading to pull back of the growth and an increase in operational cost.
To rectify this situation and provide the necessary tools for the industry to keep its growth and spread, CIBAFI decided to enter in a long-term strategic partnership with a reliable information technology partner who's capable of providing innovative solutions that utilizes the latest technology platforms and capabilities to foster this emerging industry. After a thorough study of the regional market, ideas Holding Group has been selected for this mission, and a 10 years convention has been signed between both parties on the 23rd of January 2011.
As per this convention, both CIBAFI and ideas Holding work together to develop a range of technology based services and products targeted to the emerging Islamic Financial sector and institutions. These solutions shall help in creating a proper awareness of Islamic Finance concepts, introduce the various Islamic concepts and products to the world of finance, provide up to date information and guidance to the Islamic Financial institutions, provide high-tech solutions that suit the nature of Islamic financial transactions, and provide the necessary IT and Business Support to the Council and member organizations.
According to ideas Holding's CEO, Jaleel Sharaf, the first project to start with is the development of an innovative, comprehensive, and highly dynamic specialized web portal for the Council that shall enable it to provide all of its services, information and products under a single roof. "The portal will include a centralized electronic library that can be quickly and easily accessed by all subscribers using their computers and mobile devices including mobile phones, tablets, and other sort of devices." said Sharaf. "This is in addition to the Islamic financial information center, online membership management system, utility apps, and other products that will be developed gradually according to the agreed plan", he added.
Commenting on this strategic step, CIBAFI's Secretary General, Dr. Ezzedine Khoja, said: "The industry of Islamic finance is rapidly growing and has proved its ability to stand economic crises as we all witnessed during the recent economical rescission that severely affected the financial sector around the globe. This makes us, being the only organization that contains all Islamic financial institutions and banks all around the world, to focus more on investing in technology and encourage Islamic financial institutions to adopt today's technology in order to solidify this industry's base and foster its growth". For this to happen, according to Dr. Khoja, CIBAFI needs a technology partner whom it can work with and rely on in building the bridge on which the industry can pass to the other end. "We are certain that ideas Holding Group, with its market experience and professional expertise, both in technology and business, is a partner that we can rely on." Dr. Khoja added.
CIBAFI was founded in 1999, Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. In 2001, an agreement between CIBAFI and the Government of Bahrain has been made where the Kingdom hosts the Council's Head Quarter and provides all the necessary support to enable its activities and contributions; Royal Decree No. 23 of 2001.
ideas Holding Group:
A market leader Bahraini Holding Company, established in 2003, to provide the local and regional markets with total business solutions through its specialized subsidiaries: ideas Information Technology, itcan Consultancy and PR, injaz Construction & Design, iLaw Legal Services, inma Training and Education, and ihsan Community Support.