Maybank launches fintech sandbox

Promising sector: Abdul Farid describes the fintech industry in Asean as being ‘full of potential and talent’.

PETALING JAYA: Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) has launched a regional collaborative financial technology (fintech) sandbox, in tandem with its aim to spur opportunities for start-ups and innovators to develop and test new ideas.

The Maybank sandbox will provide essential components for free and catalyse further development of fintech in the region, Maybank said.

Maybank group president and CEO Datuk Abdul Farid Alias (pic) described the fintech industry in Asean as being “full of potential and talent” and he wanted Maybank’s sandbox to provide the tools and collaborate with fintech talents in Asean.

He said while many Asean countries were investing in developing and nurturing fintech, growth is still slow as compared to more establish fintech hubs such as the United States and Europe.

“Having a great idea is not good enough to sell a product. Fintech companies need to be able to develop a minimum viable product (MVP) in order to attract the right investments and funding. This is where many fintech companies face challenges – in their ability to move from ideation to a working MVP,” he explained.

In addition to its flexible and conducive environment, the Maybank sandbox will offer developers with real banking application programming interface (API) to connect and make use of existing banking functions. The platform also provides simulated data for analytics and simulation, as well as development tools to enable them to create new web and mobile applications.

Maybank group chief technology officer Mohd Suhail Amar Suresh said the Maybank sandbox was unique as it was accessible to developers in the region and even across the globe, to get connected with ideators, academia, businesses and their peers to create innovative end-to-end solutions.

“Our aim is to be the leading platform for aspiring fintech, technologists, technology enthusiasts and even students from anywhere in the world who want to learn about developing real world solutions to ideas that not only come from banks but also brokers, insurance companies and other non-bank organisations,” said Suhail.

“Hence, the Maybank sandbox is developed with a simplified and intuitive user experience and is packed with functionality, tools and environments, to ensure that it is friendly to non-technical or expert users,” he said.

Last month, Bank Negara approved four firms to operate within its fintech regulatory sandbox. The firms are two foreign-owned entities, GoBear and WorldRemit, as well as GetCover and MoneyMatch which are Malaysian owned start-ups.

The central bank’s sandbox serves as a platform to allow regulated financial institutions and fintech companies to experiment with fintech solutions in a production or live environment, subject to appropriate safeguards and regulatory requirements.

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