New Direct Islamic Bank North America
Proprietary project of Net Projects (now part of Gulf Banking Consultants).
There are almost 6 million Muslims in the USA (more people of Muslim faith than of Jewish faith in the USA by some count).
While the Muslim population has access to conventional banking products, economics of business did not allow conventional banks to offer Islamic products through their branch network. The incremental cost of offering these products and training branch staff was a lot more than the incremental revenue.
Besides, there was a potential to confuse the mainstream customer base. The advent of internet banking now makes it economical to offer differentiated products to relatively small segments of population, notwithstanding how geographically fragmented they might be.
With limited incremental cost, a conventional direct banking player / internet bank can create a separate Islamic identity without the risk of confusing its mainstream customer base.
Over a six months period, worked on a proprietary project to launch a direct Islamic banking player in the USA to meet the financial services needs of the North American Muslim population.
Conducted primary market research and identified an Islamic credit card as the leading product for developing customer relationship.
The project identified other lending products and some investment products for cross-selling to increase revenue per customer.
Prepared a detailed business case and financial case for the project and benchmarked revenue enhancement potential with other leading credit card players.
Commenced interaction with potential JV partner financial institutions in the USA and started negotiations with potential Middle Eastern investors.
The project was abandoned after the September 11 event in New York.