Kyndryl boosts personalisation of experiences at United Arab Bank

Kyndryl boosts personalisation of experiences at United Arab Bank

United Arab Bank has brought Kyndryl on-board to boost personalisation of customer experiences, transform legacy data structures, and improve organisational decision making and productivity.

United Arab Bank, was established in 1975 as a joint venture between UAE investors and the French international financial conglomerate, Société Générale. United Arab Bank is considered amongst the longest-standing banking and financial services providers in UAE. Headquartered in Sharjah, United Arab Bank operates through six branches, 17 ATMs, and 11 cash and cheque deposit machines across UAE offering retail and corporate banking services.

United Arab Bank has established itself as a partner of choice for corporate clientele with a suite of Wholesale Banking, Trade Finance, Retail Banking, Financial Markets services, in addition to Islamic Banking solutions.

United Arab Bank recently announced its collaboration with Kyndryl. Kyndryl is a large IT infrastructure service provider serving thousands of enterprise customers in more than 60 countries. Kyndryl designs and builds, complex, mission-critical information systems.

Kyndryl is supporting United Arab Bank in its journey to design and implement a new and industry-aligned enterprise data model that transforms its data assets.

Pain points

The pandemic drove consumers to the online world of e-commerce and consumer brands were compelled to digitally transform to meet higher levels of customer experience and customer expectations.

According to Emre Yalcin, Head of Retail Banking at United Arab Bank, many brands built seamless and effective digital experiences at the onset of the pandemic. Online shopping platforms to streaming services invested to provide their consumers with an array of choices and relevant, personalised experiences.

“However, the banking industry has yet to meet the same level of expectations, and only a small portion of customers think they receive personalised guidance regarding their financial decisions,” says Yalcin. “In the United Arab Bank’s Retail Banking business, we firmly believe in the importance of data-driven decisions and tailored customer experiences.

One of the common challenges is the presence of unstructured data scattered across multiple legacy systems that lack interoperability. These systems operate independently, resulting in fragmented data silos which hinders analysis and decision-making, indicates Andreas Beck, Vice President and Managing Director, Kyndryl Middle East and Africa.

“The challenge lies in the unstructured nature of the data, rendering it meaningless and unprepared for meaningful insights. To unlock the true value of data, there is a need for data consolidation, integration, and structuring, unleashing its full potential for informed decision-making and improved operational efficiency,” says Beck.

Adds Ayman AlQudsi, Chief Information Officer of United Arab Bank, “We needed serious efforts to harness the power of the bank’s data.”

Andreas Beck, Vice President and Managing Director, Kyndryl Middle East and Africa
Andreas Beck, Vice President and Managing Director, Kyndryl Middle East and Africa


Kyndryl was selected by United Arab Bank to support it in its endeavour to develop and implement a modern enterprise data model aligned with industry standards.

Under the agreement, Kyndryl will work closely with United Arab Bank to extract large volumes of raw data from various systems, transform them into a structured and actionable format, and create a single unified view within the organisation.

Implementation of Kyndryl will complement and reinforce the bank’s ongoing work in enhancing customer experience, boosting employee productivity, and ensuring data management and protection.

“The objective is to establish a single, unified view of data within United Arab Bank,” says Kyndryl’s Beck.

Enterprise data models are tailored to specific industries and influenced by the key performance indicators that are measured within the business. Kyndryl engages directly with business users to gain a thorough understanding of their specific business goals, definitions and measurement methods, as well as the industry-standard KPIs.

“From there, we work backward to establish the KPI calculations, identify the necessary data elements, and map them to the relevant source systems,” says Beck.

To support this, Kyndryl requires foundational application components, such as a data warehouse; an Extract, Transform, Load system; and a data modeler; which run as native services on Infrastructure-as-a-Service within a public or private cloud environment.

The road map for implementation is not without its challenges. They encompass the following:

  • Burden of significant technical debt
  • Abundance of technology options available
  • Data trapped within legacy tools and applications hindering progress
  • Scarcity of individuals possessing combined skills of data modelling and industry expertise

Overcoming these challenges involves driving change throughout the organisation and defining the methods for measuring and attributing the ultimate business impact achieved.

Data transformation

United Arab Bank has created an advanced data management framework that uses the latest analytical processes to drive results across all of its platforms and delivery channels.

Ayman AlQudsi, Chief Information Officer, United Arab Bank
Ayman AlQudsi, Chief Information Officer, United Arab Bank

According to AlQudsi, United Arab Bank is making progress in automation by transforming core platforms to online and mobile banking. Using Kyndryl enhances the data storage infrastructure and security landscape. It helps to transform the collection of structured and unstructured data into an actionable intelligent platform.

These initiatives will improve the bank’s customer experience, and help to understand behaviours and trends, which will eventually help to tailor customised offerings for each customer, improve lending decisions, improve retention, while decreasing fraud and ensuring compliance with regulatory reporting.

Enterprise data models offer numerous benefits to organisations. Firstly, they provide a standardised and consistent structure for organising and managing data across the enterprise, which promotes data integration, interoperability, and data governance.

“This leads to improved quality and reliability and facilitates informed, data driven decision-making,” says Kyndryl’s Beck.

Enterprise data models also support data-driven initiatives, such as analytics and business intelligence, enabling organisations to gain valuable insights and make informed decisions. Additionally, they enhance collaboration and communication among different business units, and contribute to increased operational efficiency, reduced redundancy, and improved agility in adapting to changing business needs.

Moving forward

With the fast pace of digital transformation inside the region, banks and financial institutions need to prioritise their data strategy to avoid falling behind in meeting their customer expectations.

“Our collaboration with Kyndryl exhibits our commitment to putting data at the heart of all our decisions and driving a productive and sustainable value exchange with our customers. I am confident that Kyndryl will play a pivotal role in United Arab Bank’s journey in transforming its data assets and positioning them as key components of customer engagement models, enabling us to offer personalised financial solutions and experiences,” says United Arab Bank’s Yalcin.

“No matter the industry, enhancing customer experience is key to success. That is why we are proud to support United Arab Bank in its journey to fully harness the power of its data to provide best-in-class experience and personalised offerings to its customers,” says Fionnuala Morris, Vice President and Managing Director, Kyndryl Middle East.

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