Ethos & Thought Machine to Launch a Shariah-Compliant Digital Financial Service

Thought Machine’s next-generation core banking platform, Vault Core, will power Ethos real-time Shariah-compliant financial solutions available on mobile devices.

Ethos & Thought Machine to Launch a Shariah-Compliant Digital Financial Service

Ethos, a financial services company, has partnered with Thought Machine, the cloud-native banking technology provider, to launch a Shariah-compliant ethical bank in the UK.

Shariah-compliant or Islamic banking means financial services that do not contradict the fundamental principles of the Quran – the central religious text of Islam. For instance, Islamic banking prohibits usury, speculation or gambling, and taking interest on loans. Therefore, religious people who strive to maintain their Islamic beliefs often find it challenging to use traditional banking services.

Ethos strives to build a digital ecosystem of ethical financial service firms enabling individuals to uphold their ethical and religious principles while accessing state-of-the-art financial services. It is not yet legally a bank. However, the fintech is currently applying to become a licensed UK bank and welcomes potential customers to join the waiting list for the innovative Shariah-compliant banking app.

Initially, the firm is targeting Muslim communities. Eventually, Ethos will expand its services to other ethically-minded consumer groups in the UK. After its launch in the UK, the company plans to expand its service to other global markets such as Saudi Arabia.

Its first banking products will be a Shariah-compliant deposit account (Mudaraba structure) and a Home Purchase Plan mortgage (Musharakah and Ijarah structure). Savings at Ethos will be used to fund ethically and socially conscious initiatives, according to the company’s website.

The planned banking platform will be based on Thought Machine’s next-generation core banking platform, Vault Core, and its global Product Library collection of pre-built financial products. As the platform is easily tailored to any region’s specific banking product regulations and customer requirements, Ethos will not only be able to build its own differentiated and personalised services but also fulfil its international expansion goals with this tech stack.

“We are thrilled to announce our partnership with Thought Machine, a company renowned for its superior product design. We assessed all the next-generation vendors in the market, and Vault Core offered the high availability, performance, flexibility, and personalisation required to provide customers with modern banking benefits while honouring their community traditions.”

Hasan Raza, CEO of Ethos

Before partnering with Ethos, Thought Machine provided its cloud-based core banking services to prominent banks such as Lloyds Banking Group, Standard Chartered Bank, Jordan Ahli Bank, Al Rajhi Bank Malaysia, Atom Bank, C6 Bank, and more. In 2023, the company partnered with fintech startup Trafalgar, which aims to provide financial services for SMEs in Mexico and beyond.

Nina Bobro

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Nina is passionate about financial technologies and environmental issues, reporting on the industry news and the most exciting projects that build their offerings around the intersection of fintech and sustainability.