At a Glance

3 months to migrate major acquisitions to Temenos core banking

45 days to launch branch operations in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia from scratch

50% efficiency gains in the back-office support highly cost-effective growth

49% rise in profits in 2022, a new record for Capital Bank

12 months for the  subsidiary National Bank of Iraq to go live with Temenos core banking and payments hub

• Processed 188,000 payments in the first month after launch, with 99% STP rate

Established in 1995, the Capital Bank of Jordan (Capital Bank) specializes in commercial and investment banking services for retail and corporate clients. Capital Bank has developed into one of the top financial institutions in Jordan, and has built a strong regional presence through expansion into markets including Iraq and Saudi Arabia.

Izzidin Abusalameh, Group Chief Operating Officer at Capital Bank, says: “The last three years have been remarkable for our business. We’ve grown in Jordan to become the 3rd largest bank, rising from the 15th position in 2020, We also currently rank among the 50 largest banks in the Middle East.”

How has Capital Bank made such an impressive rise? With a strategy aimed at driving rapid expansion across local and regional markets, fueled and sustained by the bank’s longstanding partnership with Temenos.

Bringing on big acquisitions

Capital Bank has counted on Temenos core banking technology for more than a decade. As the bank ramped up its growth plans, it knew that its core banking model also needed to evolve.

Izzidin Abusalameh explains: “In 2020, we began negotiations to acquire Bank Audi’s operations in Jordan and Iraq. They were a bank of similar size to us, so it was a serious undertaking, effectively doubling our operations. We wanted to bring them onto our Temenos core banking system, and we decided to upgrade to the latest release of Temenos in preparation for the integration.”

The upgrade primed Capital Bank to take advantage of a more modern system architecture and all-new functionality. It paved the way for a swift, smooth integration of the Bank Audi business; in all, it took between three to four months to complete the core banking migration.

Capital Bank’s expansion strategy took another leap forward in late 2022, with the acquisition completion of Société Générale Bank Jordan. Once more, Capital Bank was able to migrate the new business’ core banking operations to Temenos in a span of just three months. This allowed the bank to minimize disruption to both employees and customers, while unlocking the benefits of a larger operational footprint sooner.

We are very proud of what we have achieved with the acquisition of these two banks. It’s no small thing to integrate an entire business into your own in just a few months, but we were able to do it thanks to Temenos and the commitment of our project team. Having a strong core banking system, and people who are willing to go the extra mile, were instrumental to our success.”

Izzidin Abusalameh, Group Chief Operating Officer at Capital Bank

Deepening and expanding the partnership

With these latest acquisitions under its belt, Capital Bank turned its attention to a more established part of its business: the National Bank of Iraq. Acquired in 2005, the National Bank of Iraq deal has allowed Capital Bank to make inroads into an important regional market.

Until 2022, the bank had been running on a legacy core banking system. In that year, Capital Bank decided to also migrate the bank’s end-to-end operations to the Temenos core banking platform. At the same time, it also deployed the Temenos Payments Hub (TPH) at National Bank of Iraq, the first bank in its suite of companies to adopt the solution.

The relative size of the National Bank of Iraq (about twice as big as Capital Bank), and deploying TPH, made the project more complex than previous migrations. Yet it was completed within one year, noting that the project also involved bringing more than 25 third-party vendor integrations, deployment of four other brand-new systems, configuration of new automations, including with the central bank of Iraq, and translation of the system into Arabic. With all the testing completed, the actual migration was delivered in December 2023, taking 96hrs, with all the planned capabilities, dashboards, and metrics available from day one of go-live.

The work was led by one in-house project manager, with Temenos and ITSS Egypt, a Temenos partner, providing support.

This was a highly complex exercise, with many moving parts. Through countless hours of hard work, collaboration, and tireless efforts, we took just 12 months to transition the National Bank of Iraq to a cutting-edge core banking system and a new payments hub, resulting in smooth operations from day one.”

Izzidin Abusalameh, Group Chief Operating Officer at Capital Bank

The bank didn’t have to wait long to see the impact. In the first month after go-live, it processed 188,923 incoming and outgoing domestic and international payments, with a 99% STP rate. The project was also named ‘Best Core Banking Implementation: Best Project Implementation’ by IBSi as part of their 2023 Innovation Awards.

The partnership with Temenos has supported  Capital Bank establish additional presence in Saudi Arabia. Two years ago, National Bank of Iraq received a banking license to launch a new branch in Riyadh, the country’s capital city. To get operations at the site up and running and start accepting customer transactions, the bank implemented a new instance of Temenos core banking, going live in just 45 days.

Recipe for success

Izzidin Abusalameh is in no doubt about the game changing nature of its expansion of Temenos to the National Bank of Iraq.

This new system will not only enhance operational efficiency but also support providing our customers with a superior digital banking experience. The achievement marks a significant milestone in our digital journey and positions us as a leading player in the banking industry.”

Izzidin Abusalameh, Group Chief Operating Officer at Capital Bank

Reflecting on the project, Izzidin Abusalameh points to several crucial factors. On the technical side, the availability of pre-configured out-of-the-box capabilities within both Temenos core banking and TPH meant the team could avoid building complex customizations. He also points to the value of having a meticulous project plan from the outset, detailing thousands of tasks, that acted as a reference throughout the project and ensured clarity and accountability at all times.

Culture was also an ingredient of success, says Izzidin Abusalameh, “We had the right people, with relevant skills, experience and spirit, and enabled by our board with authority to make quick decisions.”

Supporting stellar operations

With Temenos core banking now deployed throughout its businesses, Capital Bank has a trusted and powerful platform for supporting its full range of banking products and services across retail, corporate, asset management, and more. When the bank wishes to enhance existing services or introduce all-new products, it uses Temenos to simplify and accelerate the process.

“Temenos core banking makes life easy for us,” confirms Izzidin Abusalameh. “It’s essential for us, providing all the capabilities we need to support our banking operations. When we are building a new product or implementing a new bank business model, we put as much on the core as possible, because we know that Temenos is capable of supporting it.” In Temenos, Capital Bank has found a partner it can count on to keep expanding and improving this core banking universe.

Our partnership with Temenos is immensely valuable to us. Every year, Temenos releases new features and enhancements. They keep up with the latest technology developments and constantly bring something new to their customers.”

Izzidin Abusalameh, Group Chief Operating Officer at Capital Bank

Free to grow

Enabled by Temenos, Capital Bank has been able to grow without limits, adding new products, and winning more customers all while controlling cost and complexity. As operations have expanded, the bank has simultaneously lifted back-office efficiency by at least 50 percent.

The efficiency gains translate into a better experience for Capital Bank’s rapidly growing customer base. They can count on transactions to be processed quickly and accurately, and for service requests to be handled promptly. It allowed the bank to maintain high customer retention levels—crucial to the long-term success of its acquisitions—and to cultivate a reputation for service excellence that’s helping it win even more new business.

With Temenos core banking in place, along with the improvements we continue to make to processes and workflows, we have been able to bring much more efficiency to our back-office operations as we have grown. Compared to three years ago, our operational efficiency is at least 50 percent higher.”

Izzidin Abusalameh, Group Chief Operating Officer at Capital Bank

Fit for the future

Capital Bank’s hard work over the past three years has led to impressive financial results, including record profits with a 17% increase over the previous year. The bank considers Temenos to be an important contributor to this success, and an integral part of its plans for the future. No surprise then that it plans to upgrade all its banks to the latest release 23 of the Temenos core banking throughout 2024 and extend TPH to Capital Bank of Jordan as well.

Izzidin Abusalameh continues: “We have big plans for the coming years and wherever that journey takes us, we know that Temenos will be accompanying us. Through all our growth and change, Temenos core banking has been the one constant.”

We partnered successfully with

ITSS provides high-quality services for banks with Temenos Transact in parts of Africa, Middle East, Asia and Latin America.