KUALA LUMPUR: Kenanga Investment Bank Bhd aims to become the first investment bank in the Asean region to launch a super app.
The group signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Ant Group, part of the Hangzhou China-based Alibaba Group, for this purpose.
“With this, I think we will be the first in the Asean region to do this,” said Kenanga Investment Bank’s group managing director Datuk Chay Wai Leong, after the signing ceremony yesterday.
“If you look through the products, I think no one has done it before. Only China has a similar app, through its Ali or Tencent App, with fund management and stock broking offerings, including the other lifestyle products.
“There is one in the Philippines, but it doesn’t have the stockbroking option,” he added
With the MoU, Kenanga will leverage on mPaaS, a mobile development platform from Ant Group’s digital technology unit, to launch Malaysia’s first wealth super app.
Chay said the group is pumping in capital expenditure of at least RM10mil to develop the super app through the partnership with the Ant Group and would like it launched sometime in the first quarter of next year.,
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“If you follow our company, this journey started some five or six years ago when we asked ourselves how do we future-proof ourselves?
“Digitalisation may not have been on everyone’s mind at that point in time, but it was certainly on our minds, and there were a lot of discussions at management and board level,” said Chay.
“We believe that going online, or digital, is the future. We believe the power of information should be in the hands of the retailer. You can invest in mutual funds or other things, but increasingly, the retailers are taking over.
“You can quickly look through 10 years of data, exchange currencies while queuing up for your coffee – this is the power and technology that we have today,” he added.
It is hoped that the super app will revolutionise how Malaysians approach wealth generation and management through an integration of a suite of financial solutions, such as stock trading, digital investment management, eWallet, crypto trading and foreign currency exchange, onto a single platform and ecosystem.
“We look forward to not only unifying a broad spectrum of financial offerings under one roof, but more importantly, to make wealth creation more accessible by democratising financial services for the millions of Malaysians around the country, people who want better, swifter and cheaper access to financial products and solutions,” Chay said.
The development of the super app extends the portfolio of digital products that Kenanga has successfully rolled out, from Rakuten Trade, Malaysia’s fastest growing online stock trading platform, to Kenanga Digital Investing, a robo-adviser that has grown to over RM250mil in assets under management in six months, it said.