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AFS - Arab Financial Services - Bahrain
AFS increases focus on frictionless payment solutions in the Region
April 29, 2018
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Arab Financial Services (AFS) held its Annual General Meeting for the 2017 financial year on 25th April 2018.
At the AGM meeting, Mr. Sael Al Waary, Chairman of the Board of Directors of AFS, outlined the company’s strategic vision going forward and pointed out that the AFS is taking significant steps in building more traction in the fintech sector in the region.  
 
These initiatives will support the movement towards a cashless society in many countries in the Middle East and Africa and will be delivered in partnership with banks, telcos and retailers. 
 
Outlining the Company’s vision, Mr. Al Waary said AFS is planning to be the partner of choice in payments and to be the Fintech enabler for our partners across all its markets.
 
In the frictionless payments area, bwallet was launched in January 2018 in Bahrain.  It was the first cloud-based frictionless payment product in partnership with Batelco, with ground breaking electronic KYC (Know-Your-Customer) process for swift and efficient customer registration. 
 
The wallet was ahead of the curve product in the region and has seen tremendous success.  Users of bwallet can transact at over 500 key merchants across Bahrain.  The value of payments for transactions has increased by a record level since its launch.
 
AFS’s CEO, Mr. B Chandrashekar, added that the company will continue to remain focused to drive growth both through geographical expansion and driving the adoption of the Fintech services across its existing and prospective clients.  AFS is also entering the merchant acquiring business in Bahrain and Oman in 2018.
 
Earlier, in March 2018, AFS and Bank ABC hosted the 2nd Middle East and Africa Fintech Forum, attracting industry keynote speakers from across the globe.  The clear message at the event was that more and more banks are embracing Fintech and not seeing it as a threat.  Also Artificial Intelligence will become mainstream and permeate across all levels of banking system.  The event was attended by over 450 key decision makers and leaders in the Fintech space from Africa and the Middle East.
 
At the AGM, AFS reported total net revenues of USD 34.4 million in 2017, up from USD 32.8 million.  Profits rose to USD 8.5 million in 2017, compared to USD 7.4 million in 2016, reflecting a 15% growth in 2017.