Who are the key people in the bank?
The Board of Directors of Islamic Bank of Britain is represented principally by a group of senior bankers from both the Gulf and UK. All Board appointments are approved by the Financial Services Authority.
From which sections of the Muslim community in the UK do you expect to get your customers?
Our proposition is one that should appeal to all branches of the Muslim community, but we do not believe our customers will be exclusively drawn from the Muslim community. Our policy of ethical investment means that we hope and expect to attract a wider range of customers, based on the values within our business and attractiveness of the proposition.
What has been the response to the bank from key opinion formers and groups in the Muslim community – for example, the Muslim Council of Britain?
They have been extremely supportive. They are keen to see the establishment of an Islamic banking solution in the Western World, to meet the needs of a growing Muslim population.
How can you survive in such a competitive marketplace?
We can and will survive, as we provide a competitive offering and are targeted towards key communities. Islamic Bank of Britain is the UK’s first stand-alone, Sharia compliant, retail bank. All our accounts and services are founded on a mutually-agreed division of shared profit, based on trading.
As a stand-alone bank, we make every effort to ensure that we do not compromise the principles of the Islamic faith by mixing our funds with interest bearing funds. We fund all our operations on a Sharia compliant basis.
How will you work with and support Muslim communities in the UK?
We believe it is important that we contribute to the community beyond the commercial activity we undertake. This area of social responsibility is something that we shall be developing alongside the growth of our business. We see it as an area where our branch managers in particular will play a prominent role.