ICICB Group Plans Digital Bank for Brazil

Digital Banking

Dubai’s ICICB Group wants to become a player in Brazil’s burgeoning digital banking space, the financial services company announced in a news release Friday (Jan. 28).

“This new phase of innovation and reliability will support the nation’s top institutions and industries to promote business,” the company said. “The public will benefit from easy, fast and secure fund collection globally. The anticipated launch date is the second half of 2022.”

ICICB Group says it plans to offer a “full spectrum” for customers in Brazil, beginning initially with conversion of balance from one fiat currency to another, as well as crypto exchange, and decentralized crypto wallet, and “potential investments in prosperous products.”

The company’s vision includes “high levels of process automation and web-based services,” as well as APIs that will facilitate composition of cross-institutional products and transactions. ICICB says businesses can employ big data and AI to get a better idea of future trends and changes, plus better comprehension of the motivations and aspirations of their ideal customers.

Read more: How Digital Banking is Changing Latin America

ICICB’s efforts come at a time when digital banking adoption is expanding across Latin America, with a growing number of financial institutions (FIs) and digital- and mobile-only FinTechs vying for consumers’ attention in the last year.

As PYMNTS reported in December, Brazil’s five biggest banks — Banco do Brasil, Bradesco, Caixa Economica Federal, Itau and Santander Bank — have taken measures to innovate their digital features to keep up with these rising digital-first challengers, said Brad Liebmann, founder and CEO of Brazilian FI alt.bank, a mobile-only operation which offers its customers a mobile banking app paired with a debit card.

“All of the big banks — the big five — have been focusing more on their digital [strategies] than they [had] been, to some extent,” Liebmann told PYMNTS. “But I think it’s FinTechs like us and the innovation that we’re driving that is forcing these banks to be more digital and improve the [user experience] on their apps.”