Tasheel Finance: Merging finance and technology - Muzaffer Hamid's journey to success
CEO of United Company for Financial Services Tasheel Finance, Muzaffer Hamid, shares his experience in the world of finance and technology.
Driven and enthusiastic, Muzaffer Hamid, CEO of United Company for Financial Services Tasheel Finance (UCFS), attained a bachelor's degree in Banking and Finance before beginning his professional journey in May 1997 with Citibank UAE in the Global Corporate and Investment Bank.
"I have always been fascinated by the effective use of technology in finance, and this helped define my career right from the beginning," states Hamid. "I was fortunate to start my career with banking operations where I worked across all units of operations and technology, which gave me a strong understanding on the fundamentals of banking."
After working steadily for three years, Hamid decided to enrich his knowledge of finance and technology further by pursuing his MBA in technology Management from the University of Sheffield, UK. "Once I completed my MBA, I returned to Citibank and worked in different units," he explains, "My last role in Citibank was in Bahrain where I was the Chief Operating Officer."
In 2006, Hamid joined Fullerton Financial Holdings, which later created Dunia Finance (now known as Deem Finance) in the UAE where he was appointed as Chief of Operations. Fast-forward to 2018, Hamid moved to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to start a consumer finance company as the CEO.
Hamid realised early in his career that most banks do not use the full potential of their IT platforms to serve their customers. "I understood that simple is better for the customer, and us bankers often complicate products and services for them; this was something I wanted to change. James Grant, author of Money of the Mind, once said: 'Progress is cumulative in science and engineering but cyclical in Finance', and I believe that every seasoned banker should know and understand this notion in great depth."
Reflecting on his journey, Hamid credits his experiences with various businesses across Europe, Middle East, Africa, and Asia for contributing to his understanding of running a business successfully and considers his achievements at various start-ups as the highlight of his career. "I was a founder member and I thoroughly enjoyed the sweet taste of success as I witnessed a business come to life."
Established in May 2019, UCFS offers Personal and Installment Finance products through its wide distribution network. Hamid adds, "it is a closed joint-stock company that is a fully owned subsidiary of United Electronics Company (eXtra) and currently operates in KSA. Tasheel Finance specialises in providing Shari'ah compliant financing solutions and is governed by the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority."
According to Hamid, the company's competitive edge lies in its core strategy, which incorporates a customer-centric approach towards business transformation. "UCFS believes that business operations should always have a customer focus rather than a process, technology, and channel focus. With this DNA at its core, UCFS offers an unprecedented, truly unique end-to-end digital experience for our customers - a feature that has proven to be crucial in recent times, due to the Covid-19 pandemic."
Discussing the impact of the pandemic in further detail, Hamid believes that while every crisis is deeply disturbing, it can also present opportunities for resilient companies to improve and grow. "Since its inception, UCFS recognised the need to be creative and dexterous under any circumstance. Having invested in the latest state-of-the-art technology, we successfully managed to operate during the pandemic with minimal disruption and also launched the much needed end-to-end fully digital customer journey, allowing them to access world-class financial products from the comfort of their home or office. To its existing customers, UCFS follows an empathetic approach offering flexible payment solutions so that they can prioritise their families and health."
Hamid's commendable story illustrates how passion and diligence can create the road to success. His message to aspiring entrepreneurs: "Discover what inspires and drives you the most in life and pursue it with passion. As in every walk of life, hard work and determination are key to any success. My favourite quote is one by Peter Drucker who said, "The best way to predict the future is to create it."
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