At a Glance

●  Supports 40% growth in customer volumes and 40% boost in assets under management

● Enables the launch of first-of-a-kind funds transfer services via mobile and online

●  50% faster to launch new products to the market

●  Went live in just 10 months despite significant disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic

●  Breaks new ground as the 1st Libyan bank to deploy the Temenos digital platform

Already one of the top banks in Libya, Assaray Trade and Investment Bank (ATIB) has ambitious plans to become the leading digital bank not only in its home market but across the whole North African region. To achieve this, ATIB focuses on delivering first-class services that win growing numbers of customers, while building streamlined internal operations to attract the very best banking talents.

Farouk K. Laabidi, General Manager, ATIB, explains: “10 years ago, ATIB primarily focused its efforts on the corporate market. However, with the ever-increasing demand for retail online and mobile banking services among consumers, especially in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, the bank has strategically expanded its services into the retail banking space. Targeting these digitally-savvy customers is a key strategic goal for us.”

Setting the standard for innovation

Operating in Libya presents significant challenges for banks, as the country’s national infrastructure is currently in the process of development and its political situation has experienced some periods of unpredictability, which can present slowness to growth. Many banks have been unrushed to embrace digital technologies, with some not fully integrated to the national payment system and unable to accept all types of electronic transfers. But where other service providers see limitations, ATIB recognizes huge opportunities for building long-term success. ATIB believes that innovation is a matter of culture, it starts from the top, and all employees are encouraged to embrace it.

Farouk K. Laabidi continues: “We have focused on digital transformation since 2014, bringing many innovative services to market. For example, during the difficult times of cash shortages in the period of 2016–2019, we were one of the leading banks to launch reliable prepaid payment cards and offer an electronic wallet application that allows users to purchase goods via their mobile devices. As well as enhancing and developing new digital services, we are now excited by the possibilities of open banking.”

However, ATIB realized that its existing core and digital banking solutions were starting to restrict its ability to innovate. Building tailored services for different customer segments was a difficult, time-consuming process, and the bank did not have the modern API functionality to interface with third-party services. To sharpen its competitive edge, ATIB started to look for a more advanced, customer-centric solution.

Choosing a solution with extensive capabilities

Keen to overhaul and modernize many components of its banking infrastructure, ATIB looked for a partner with extensive knowledge and experience of large-scale transformation projects. The bank decided to deploy an integrated suite of core and digital banking solutions from Temenos including Temenos Analytics, and Temenos Payments.

“We knew that Temenos is a global leader for core banking solutions, and they demonstrated deep understanding of our challenges and the future of the banking sector. Temenos technology is very impressive, especially the product development and API integration capabilities, which would allow us to connect to many different third-party services.”

Farouk Laadibi, General Manager at ATIB

Adopting a remote deployment model

Working with Temenos and Temenos business partner Prema Consulting, ATIB kicked off the implementation of the solutions, starting with Temenos core banking in a two-phase project that was completed in just ten months. To optimize performance and efficiency, the bank runs the core platform on the Microsoft Azure public cloud.

Dunia M. Ajaj, Head of PMO at ATIB, comments: “The implementation was complex, and we experienced huge disruption due to the COVID-19 pandemic. After one month we faced severe travel restrictions, but Temenos showed great flexibility by switching to a remote deployment strategy. Going live in ten months was a great result, with Temenos delivering excellent support to keep the project moving forward.”

Muawiya Abu Jubain, CEO, Prema-C, added “We believe that ATIB’s project is a strategic project for us, knowing the ambitions the bank management and employees have in deploying the world renowned Temenos core banking system. And we wanted to be part of this exciting journey that brings growth and innovation to ATIB. Despite the pandemic, we managed to reach the bank’s goal of going live in a record time of ten months. This could have never been achieved without the dedication of ATIB’s team, Prema consultants, and the Temenos project management team and consultants.”

Transforming the customer experience

Using Temenos core banking, ATIB enhanced many of its customer services. For example, the bank used the rich integration functionality of the Temenos solution to deliver greater flexibility to customers using its prepaid payment cards. Whenever users need to top up their card with funds from their electronic wallet or account, they can now manage the process quickly and easily via their mobile device.

“Temenos core banking delivers so many great capabilities; from high levels of security to close control over financing arrangements. We have also halved our time to market for new products and services with the Temenos solution.”

Abdulmohaimen M. Matoug, Head of Digital Transformation (Revolv) at ATIB

Using Temenos Analytics, ATIB adopted a more customer-centric approach to development, as Farouk K. Laabidi explains: “With our old core platform, we could not gain a detailed picture of customer behavior. Using Temenos Analytics, we analyze their preferences and requirements in depth, and build more relevant, personalized offerings closely aligned with their financial needs and lifestyles.”

Breaking new ground in the Libyan market

Since then, ATIB has worked with Prema Consulting to implement Temenos digital banking platform – becoming the first bank in North Africa to harness the cutting-edge capabilities of the solution. The bank went live on an on-premises instance of the solution in a phased deployment process, with the business partner helping to integrate the platform with Temenos core banking and a series of third-party solutions.

ATIB has used Temenos to develop and launch a brand new feature-rich digital banking service for retail and corporate clients: ATIB Online. Accessible web and mobile app, that allows users to manage their accounts, monitor transactions, top up local and international payment cards in various currencies, and purchase mobile phone vouchers thanks to integrations with several network operators and internet service providers.

In another breakthrough move, ATIB recently added transferring funds between two bank accounts within Libya, as Farouk K Laabidi explains: “We added an integration with the national payment system to allow users to transfer money online or via their mobile. This represents a first-of-a-kind service for the Libyan market, so once again we are leading the way in terms of innovation.”

Offering customers the speed and convenience of transacting online without having to head to a bank branch has had a hugely positive impact on satisfaction levels. And ATIB Bank plans to add more products and services to the digital application, as Farouk K Laabidi notes: “We are around 60 percent of the way towards reaching our digitalization objectives. We are planning to use Temenos digital banking to create online loan origination and onboarding workflows in 2024, and we will also implement Temenos Payments Hub.”

Reaching new customers

The partnership with Temenos is helping ATIB to achieve its goal of increasing market share and becoming one of the banking leaders in Libya and beyond. The enhanced portfolio of products and services has contributed to a 40 percent boost in customer volumes, and the bank has grown its assets under management by 40 percent since partnering with Temenos. In particular, during the first three months of offering ATIB Online, the platform gained 5,000 new users—and is now aiming to onboard 20,000 by the end of 2023, and 100,000 by the end of 2026.

“Working with the Temenos solutions, we are reaching more clients than ever before. Not only are we consolidating our leadership in the corporate banking space, but we are extending our share of the retail banking market, too. As we launch more digital services with Temenos digital banking platform, we are confident that this upwards trend will continue well into the future.”

Dunia M. Ajaj, Head of PMO at ATIB

A Step Ahead of the Competition

Within ATIB, the Temenos solutions have had a significant impact on workflow efficiency. Higher levels of automation removed the need for manual interventions during many key processes, enabling employees to work more productively and reducing overall costs. Furthermore, this focus on efficiency has helped ATIB reduce its cost-to-income by up to 15 percent, and to achieve a strong return on equity of between 15 and 17 percent.

ATIB also believes that deploying a modern, world-leading suite of banking solutions will help to attract the brightest bankers in Libya.

As the Libyan banking market becomes more digitalized and embraces Open Banking, ATIB is in prime position to take full advantage, as Abdulmohaimen M. Matoug explains: “The Temenos solutions will enable us to integrate with many different partners, not only among financial services providers but also airlines and utilities companies to provide customers with more convenient payment methods.”

“With Temenos, we believe the sky is the limit on what we can achieve. Whatever innovative ideas we conceive, we know we can develop and bring them to market using the solutions. Thanks to our partnership with Temenos, we are moving towards our goal of becoming the leading digital bank in Libya and the wider region and staying well ahead of our competition.”

Dunia M. Ajaj, Head of PMO at ATIB
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Temenos Ambassador Awards 2022

Delighted to recognize ATIB as one of the winners of the Innovation Hero Awards for deploying an innovative and impactful project, using a Temenos solution.

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