China based innovative technology provider in the financial technology sector Ant Group has launched a Singapore based digital bank named ANEXT Bank. The bank incorporated in Singapore was launched on June 6.
Ant Group said ANEXT which is its wholly owned subsidiary, received approval from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to commence business on June 2. This moves goes down as the biggest overseas initiative by Ant since its thwarted mammoth $37 billion initial public offering (IPO) was stopped by the Chinese regulators.
According to Ant Group, ANEXT will be focusing on was micro, small and mid-sized enterprises (SMEs) especially those with cross-border operations. MAS Chief Fintech Officer Sopnendu Mohanty, says Ant obtained Singapore’s first digital wholesale banking licenses back in 2020.
“This marks yet another milestone in Singapore’s digital bank development journey, a strategic effort to ensure the banking sector remains progressive, globally competitive and vibrant,” added Mohanty.
ANEXT will be developing an open framework for financial institutions in partnership with Proxtera, a local entity initiated by MAS and Singapore’s Infocomm Media Development Authority. The bank will be led by Toh Su Mei.
A joint statement by both parties revealed that ANEXT business account will be operational for SMEs from the third quarter of the year.