South-east Asia's largest lender happens to be its most tech-savvy. Why then is Singapore's DBS Group Holdings missing out on some of the region's hottest deals in digital banking?
In recent years, technology has played a large role in the bank's profitable pivot away from trade financing to corporate cash management. One of its application programming interfaces that hooks up with customers' software - it has some 500 of them - allows merchants on Indonesian e-retailer Bukalapak.com to get paid in real time. The same technology allows drivers at ride-hailing company Gojek to get fares credited from their app wallets into bank accounts. But though DBS Bank is the most aggressive of Singapore's three home-grown banks, bigger international rivals are capturing prime deals in its backyard. The No. 1 challenger is Citigroup.