Maybank Islamic is targeting to achieve RM2 billion in deposits from its launch of two new financial products, within one year. The products are Foreign Currency Mudharabah-i (FCM-i), the first such product in Malaysia, and the Profit Now Account-i (PNA-i).
FCM-i is a short-term Islamic foreign currency term deposit account based on the principle of Mudharabah, which entails the concept of profit sharing between the bank and customers. It serves as a Shariah-compliant alternative to short term foreign currency investments currently available through conventional banking.
Dividends on FCM-i are based on an agreed profit-sharing ratio which is agreed up-front. The actual dividend will then be calculated on this ratio and the amount payable will be known upon maturity of the investment. The minimum deposit for individual customer is equivalent to USD5,000 with tenures ranging from 1 - 12 months. As for Non-individual customers (Business Customers) the minimum deposit is equivalent to USD20,000 with minimum tenures of 1 day for USD, 7 days for Euro, AUD and GBP, 1 month for NZD, HKD, CAD, SGD, CHF and JPY with a maximum tenure of 12 months.
Currently, Maybank Islamic offers the largest option of currency choices for FCM-i, which is available in 10 currencies, namely US dollar, Euro, Australian dollar, British pound, New Zealand dollar, Hong Kong dollar, Canadian dollar, Singapore dollar, Swiss Franc and Japanese yen.
The introduction of FCM-i expands the range of products under the International Currency Business Unit (ICBU) of Maybank Islamic, which is a growing segment for the Bank in line with the opportunities and incentives offered by the government under the MIFC. Currently, Maybank Islamic offers two other products under its ICBU segment.
PNA-i, meanwhile, is a Shariah-compliant term deposit account which has a fixed return feature and pays upfront dividend upon placement of investment. It is based on the concept of Murabahah or cost-plus sale that uses a specific Shariah-compliant commodity as the underlying asset for the sale and purchase transaction between customer and the bank.
The minimum deposit is RM10,000 with increment in multiples of RM1,000 while investment tenure ranges from one to six months. It also offers a pre-approved cash line based on the deposit amount against PNA-i certificate. In addition, PNA -i account holders also enjoy takaful PA coverage of RM10,000 per customer.
Speaking at the launch of the two new products, Ibrahim Hassan, Acting CEO of Maybank Islamic said both the new deposit products had specific benefits that would attract a wide segment of customers.
FCM-i would benefit those who would like to diversify their investment options into foreign currencies or who may want to acquire foreign currency for their business or personal use in the future.
"Being the only such product of its kind in the market under the Mudharabah concept, we believe FCM-i is timely given the increasingly globalised world we live in with Malaysians seeking alternative investment options as well as having investment and educational spending needs in foreign currencies," said Ibrahim.
PNA-i, on the other hand, is ringgit-based and is attractive to customers as it pays the term deposit upfront the moment they place the deposit. "Customers requiring cash need not use their term deposits but can place it in PNA-i to receive upfront dividend which can be used for their requirements," he said.
"We envisage significant deposits from our new products launched today which we believe will support the growth of Maybank Islamic given that we are expecting our financing to increase by at least 12% for the financial year ending 30 June 2009, up from the RM21.1 billion in loans which we have in our books at the end of the last financial year (FY) 2008," said Ibrahim.
Ibrahim said Maybank Islamic's position as the biggest Islamic banking operator in the country in terms of capital base and single customer financing limit has enabled the bank to garner good business from the corporate sector due to its ability to accommodate large loans. Key growth drivers to the Bank's consumer segment comprise automobile, mortgage ASB unit trust and personal financing.
Maybank Islamic has a total asset size of RM31.3 billion and financing asset size of RM22.3 billion as at December 2008. Since its formation as the Islamic banking subsidiary of Maybank on 1January 2008, Maybank Islamic has launched 16 deposit products covering savings accounts, demand deposits, term deposits and foreign currency accounts.