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UCB Bank, Virtual Banknotes

In Bangladesh, almost everyone has a mobile phone but few have bank accounts. We connected the two to increase secure, safe digital banking.

Banking is for the rich – a common misconception that has kept 66% of the Bangladeshi population outside the umbrella of the formal banking system. Mobile Financial Services (MFS) came in an effort to ensure financial inclusion, but most people still rely on old-fashioned physical cash or banknotes, exposing selves to the risk of theft. UPAY, a mobile wallet service from United Commercial Bank, wanted to tackle this issue. They found that the biggest barrier for adopting mobile financial services was more of a perception issue than anything else. Bangladeshi people were so accustomed to physical money that they couldn’t let go of the habit. So, the question was how to replace the physical money with non-physical digital money. The current interface of the UPAY app generates QR codes while making transactions so UCB decided it was time to redesign their interface. The replaced the unfamiliar look of the QR codes with images of banknotes that supplied the same functionality. By using a design that Bangladeshi people were so comfortable with, UCB welcomed them into the financial system and proved how much they valued each and every customer.