MasterCard today announced the official opening of a local representative office in Dhaka, Bangladesh.
The first in the industry to inaugurate an office in Bangladesh, MasterCard marked the occasion with an opening ceremony, which was graced by Guest of Honour Atiur Rahman, Governor of Bangladesh Bank as well as Nurul Amin, Chairman of Association of Bankers, Bangladesh (ABB). Also present at the ceremony were Ron Garrow, chief human resources officer, MasterCard; Ari Sarker, division president, South Asia, MasterCard; Vikas Varma, area head, South Asia, MasterCard; and Syed Mohammad Kamal, country manager, MasterCard Bangladesh; among other MasterCard executives, members of the media, as well as local and international banks and financial institutions.
MasterCard's decision to open an office in Bangladesh is based on the growth potential of the market driven by the growing middle class and e-commerce. Situated in the heart of Gulshan, Dhaka, the Bangladesh office will be headed by Syed Mohammad Kamal, country manager, MasterCard Bangladesh.
"Bangladesh is an important market for the electronic payments industry and being relatively untapped, presents an opportunity to offer innovative payment services spearheaded, in particular, by mobile phones. Our geographical presence and market position have witnessed sustained growth and today, with the launch of our office in Bangladesh, we have achieved yet another significant milestone," said Ari Sarker, division president, South Asia, MasterCard.
Speaking at the event, Atiur Rahman, the Governor of Bangladesh Bank said "We welcome the opening of MasterCard's office in Bangladesh. MasterCard was started offering its services in Bangladesh in 1997 and we are happy to see that they now have a team operating on the ground. We look forward to having MasterCard work even more closely with the local partners to implement world-class payment solutions as well as help develop the local industry."
Beyond bringing its global expertise in technology and payments processing to its local partners, one of MasterCard's key priiorities in Bangladesh is financial inclusion - the delivery of financial services at affordable costs to the underbanked segment of society. While 55% of the adult population in Bangladesh has some access to financial services, largely due to micro-finance solutions, only 22% is fully banked[i]. By working with key local financial institutions and NGOs, MasterCard looks forward to bringing safe and convenient payment services to meet the needs of the financially-underserved in Bangladesh.