FinTech in the Saudi Context: Implications for the Industry and Skills Development

FinTech in the Saudi Context: Implications for the Industry and Skills Development

Faisal Abubotain (Ministry of Finance, Saudi Arabia) and Petros Chamakiotis (ESCP Europe Business School, Spain)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-9550-2.ch009

Abstract

With the constant development in FinTech globally, Saudi Arabia is a late arrival in the FinTech world. However, the FinTech growth pace in Saudi is fast and not slowing down. This fast pace is confusing stakeholders, including bankers. This chapter unpacks how FinTech is developing in Saudi Arabia, considers the challenges and opportunities that FinTech may be facing in Saudi, and discusses how these changes may affect current bankers and how future bankers can be ready to enter the new market. The study draws on interviews with professionals in the banking and FinTech industries and makes two contributions: It suggests that FinTech is affecting retail and long-tail clients of banks (i.e., the effect on core banking operations, such as corporate banking and treasury). Findings also highlight that professionals should upgrade their knowledge around matters necessary to retain their jobs in the sector. The study has implications for future bankers (i.e., university students), suggesting that university curricula should be updated to include relevant knowledge and professional placements.
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Background

In this section, the authors review and explain what is currently known in the digitalization field and how it is disrupting different industries; discuss the relationship between digitalization and the financial sector (FinTech); and examine the relationship between education and technology. By doing so, they provide a broader view of why digitalization is seen as disruptive and revolutionary, how it affects the financial industry and in what sense, and explore how education is coping with such changes.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Digitalization: The use of digital technologies to upgrade processes.

Peer-to-Peer Lending: A platform that connects two similar clients to lend and borrow, i.e. individuals to individuals, small companies to small companies.

Peer-to-Peer Foreign Exchange Platforms: A platform connects two similar clients to exchange currencies, i.e. individuals to individuals, small companies to small companies.

Digital Disruption: The change of the nature of an industry that is caused by digital technologies.

Payment Gateway: An app that enables the user to pay through the mobile without the need for physical cash/card.

Fintech: The use of technology in the financial industry.

SAMA: Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency.

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