– Just two weeks into Ramadan, compareit4me.com, the largest financial comparison site in the Middle East, has seen a 70% increase in user applications in the UAE. compareit4me is expected to generate more than 300,000 applications in 2015, boosted by regional expansion and continuous growth in the finance comparison industry as a whole.
After enjoying stellar success in 2014, being named Best Finance Comparison Site in the UAE by IFM Awards, and Best Comparison Site in the Middle East by the Global Banking and Finance Review, the company which is now live in 6 countries has seen huge growth in its platform, which now generates over 45,000 live finance applications each month. They are poised to dominate the market with over 300,000 applications in 2015 – a big increase on its already impressive feat of 200,000 applications in 2014, more than any other comparison platform in the region.
“In past years we have seen a huge increase in the number of people applying during Ramadan, said Jon Richards, CEO of the compareit4me group. “ The first few weeks of Ramadan 2015 achieved even greater numbers and have exceeded our expectations, which can be largely attributed to the earlier arrival of the holy month and the fact that children were still in school”. He added, noting that car loans are one of the most popular products for UAE consumers, with most car dealers dropping prices and adding benefits such as free insurance or servicing.
compareit4me have no doubt benefitted from the wider economy which remains buoyant, with current foreign currency reserves standing at AED12.121 billion (USD33 billion). As rising liquidity and capital adequacy in the region bolsters regional banks’ confidence, financial powerhouses such as ADIB, CBD and Doha Bank in the GCC, a region widely considered to be a key market for facilitating the global growth of Islamic finance, are also taking advantage of the Ramadan shopping craze and aiming to increase customer numbers by offering low rates on financial products such as loans, credit cards, and personal lines of credit.
Though many banks and finance providers see this month as an opportunity to offer discounts and promotions, Richards cautions consumers to consider their commitments and finances carefully before committing to additional finance. He added “It’s easy to get carried away and purchase a new car or take out additional debt because it’s a good deal. Consumers need to think about the long term impact of the debt and most importantly, ensure they can afford the additional commitment should their personal circumstances change”.
“We want to democratize consumer finance in the Middle East and the first step towards achieving that is facilitating accurate product comparisons,” added Richards. With its services in strong demand from UAE customers, this Ramadan is turning out to be the perfect opportunity to cement compareit4me as a market leader in 2015.