OAB launches Innovation Lab to promote new ideas in banking

March 16, 2020

Oman Arab Bank (OAB) on Sunday announced the launch of first-of-its-kind ‘Innovation Lab’ in the sultanate’s banking sector.

The announcement was made at an event organised by the bank at its head office in the presence of Rashid al Musafir, CEO of OAB and other senior officials.

According to the bank officials, OAB’s Innovation Lab occupies a floor at the OAB headquarters and is aimed at driving innovative thinking in a collaborative space and further develop Oman’s knowledge-based economy.

While speaking at the launch Musafir said, “We are extremely proud to be creating a facility that further supports His Majesty’s vision and Oman’s national agenda to drive innovative thinking, develop local talent and promote entrepreneurship.”

Speaking about the lab, he explained that the design of the Innovation Lab was inspired by two of the best innovation labs in the world, Barclay’s Rise Lab in London and the Harvard Innovation Lab in Massachusetts, US.

“The Innovation Lab will host a myriad of opportunities by providing access to one-to-one mentoring, specialised workshops, and industry experts for local students, OAB staff and local, regional, and international Fintech companies,” Musafir said.

The development of the Innovation Lab is aimed at empowering local talent and entrepreneurs to become viable contributors to the evolution of Oman’s economy through the power of innovation and the spirit of collaboration, he said.

“The Innovation Hub was created to encourage innovative thinking and further develop our knowledge-based economy by empowering local Fintech companies and professionals, students and our OAB employees to contribute to the evolution of the banking sector,” said Leen al Atassi, head of innovation at OAB.

She explained that they have also roped in Innovation Development Oman (IDO) for providing further help in promoting ideas generated in the lab to proof of concept level, and then to commercial level.

“We spent the last few months putting together a spectacular programme designed to accelerate innovation across the industry and chart the future, to unleash the power of ‘Open Banking’ and create new customers experiences, revenue models and industry ecosystems,” Leen added.

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