From comparison website to digital financial advisor.
When former investment banker YT Siew, now CEO of Ringgitplus, moved back to Malaysia in 2010, he found banking to be a slow and manual process.
“It took me two hours to open a bank account and I had to find a sales person in a mall to get a credit card,’’ he recalled.
That gave him the idea to start Ringgitplus to provide a fast and convenient way for people to find the best banking and insurance products that suited their needs.
Since then, Ringgitplus has become Malaysia’s largest online financial comparison website for banking and insurance products.
Through XpressApply, consumers can also complete the entire application for a credit card or personal loan online.
This digital uptrend is expected to continue.
“More clients are shifting a greater portion of their marketing budget to digital platforms,’’ said Siew.
Brands are also looking to help their customers improve their financial literacy in these times where staying and working from home has become the new normal.
More clients are also speeding up initiatives on digital applications and transactions as consumers cannot access their products through traditional channels like branches and agents.
With over a million hits, Ringgitplus has experienced a tripling of visits to its blog since the MCO, as people look for advice on how to improve their personal finance during this challenging period.
“With Covid-19 and social distancing, it has become more important than ever to provide consumers with a quick and simple way to manage their personal finances,’’ said Siew.
They pick up their phones and search for the best banking and insurance products, anytime, anywhere.
The long term vision for Ringgitplus is to be a digital financial advisor as in tough times like these, it is important that “we help Malaysians get the most from their financial services.’’
The company has started credit scoring all customers who apply for credit cards and personal loans; it will match the customer to the right product based on his or her credit score.
It then uses its own technology and data to match the consumer to the banks that are most likely to approve them.
Ringgitplus expects its partnerships with e-wallet providers to grow, as it it helps consumers compare e-wallets, and also work with e-wallet providers themselves to provide more services to their users.
The company’s mix of banking and insurance products includes credit cards, personal loans, savings accounts, and insurance for motor, medical, travel and life.
It is paid a commission by banks and insurance companies for every product that a consumer gets through its website.
Ringgitplus has gone through three phases of development; starting from just a comparison website, it went on to provide digital applications and transactions, and is now becoming a digital financial advisor.
It looks like there is no stopping for this young and energetic team.
Yap Leng Kuen had a respected career as a senior business editor and widely read columnist speaking plainly, for the leading local newspaper. She continues to write Plain Speaking for The Star Online.
I am delighted to share her view points and insights, here.