2019 SME banking innovations in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

Financial institutions operating in Eastern Europe and Central Asia were active in providing innovative services and solutions for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in 2019. In fact, financial institutions in these regions implemented 20% more such services and solutions than in 2018, with more than 40 financial institutions distinguishing in this regard. The main areas of this focus were on:

  • Payments (45 innovations), especially the development of virtual cards, online cash desks and instant transfers
  • Non-financial services (35 innovations), including online accounting and counterparty verification
  • Financing (21 innovations), including rapid digital loan products and artificial intelligence-based decision-making solutions
  • Digital onboarding (13 innovations) such as online business registration and account opening

The most innovative financial institutions were found to be in Russia (Absolut Bank, AK Bars Bank, Alfa Bank, Vostochny Bank, VTB, Loko-Bank, Modulbank, MTS Bank, Otkrytie, Promsvyazbank, Raiffeisenbank, Sberbank, Tinkoff, Tochka and Uralsib), Ukraine (Alfa-Bank, Privatbank, FUIB and Taskcombank) and Belarus (Belinvestbank).