United Asia Finance Limited wins in HKB TEA 2020
The firm was lauded for its YES UA Online App.
United Asia Finance Limited (UA) bags the Fintech - Financial Services award at the recently concluded HKB Technology Excellence Awards, presented by Hong Kong Business magazine.
The awards event honors enterprises that take the first move and lead the charge in developing groundbreaking projects, digital services, reimagined strategies, and technological initiatives. Winners were judged on the basis of uniqueness and innovation, effectiveness and impact, and dynamism.
UA is the leading money lender in Hong Kong. Founded in 1993 and led by Managing Director and CEO Akihiro Nagahara, who introduced the concept of unsecured personal loans into the Hong Kong market in 1977, earning Nagahara the nickname 'Father of Personal Loan of Hong Kong'
Having recently celebrated its 27th anniversary, UA is gearing up in face of the fierce competition of the consumer loan market and the rise of virtual banks. As Nagahara emphasizes, “Disruption and change underpin the rise of the FinTech sector. Whether innovative, cutting-edge technologies or new, digital first business models, success in fintech and the broader Money lending industry relies in no small part on navigating this disruption.”
UA officially set up its FinTech and Innovation Department (FinTech) in January 2019, being the first and only finance company in the market to set up a FinTech department, again showing its continuous promise and commitment to offer the best consumer loan services for customers.
As a pioneer in online loan services, UA deployed the YES UA app in August 2019 to offer convenient and hassle-free loan experiences for customers. In 2020, UA advanced the app by upgrading with the electronic Know Your Customer (eKYC) solution associated using Hong Kong ID as part of the licensing process for detecting abnormalities and approved loans by new Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies. It is the first Money Lender in Hong Kong to support instant identity verification covering the new smart HKID. UA empowers users through their online app to enhance the customer experience with ultimate convenience and flexibility with mobile loan service on the go anytime anywhere.
“The first launch of the app in 2019 was a huge success, and with the advanced version in July 2020, significantly increasing the firm’s digital business volume by over 20%.” Nagahara says.
“We identify new opportunities with FinTech disruptive technologies and implement down to earth methods to attract customer’s attention in differentiated ways. Hong Kong citizens are able to use the YES UA app with their Hong Kong ID card, even the newly-issued one for part of the population, with its embedded hologram,” added UA’s CIO Aaron Lee.
To address various fintech and businesses challenges, UA has also utilised a reliable, on-premise enterprise-class cloud platform to handle extensive amounts of data and enable simplifying the process data security, management, and operation.
UA is also mainly using the VMware technology as the integration of Kubernetes solution technology to monitor microservice applications, simplify and operate Kubernetes solutions, as well as maintain compatibility with Google Container Engine (GKE). This eventually turns UA’s loan platform into an Open-API ready environment for better online application’s time to market and delivers it in a highly modifiable, scalable state.
Furthermore, UA has deployed a single vendor, hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) of dedicated private cloud solution with production-ready, scalable infrastructure, and enterprise level Kubernetes technology. This enables open microservices topology in UA’s loan platform, as well as address complex workload and maintain operational efficiency.
UA’s FinTech assists the company to keep abreast of most advanced development and enhance its innovation capability to keep realizing UA’s determination to be the pioneer in leading the industry.
The HKB Technology Excellence Awards, presented by Hong Kong Business, was held via video conferencing throughout the month of September.
This year’s nominations were judged by a panel consisting of Gilles Alexandre Salansy, Partner, Accounting and Outsourcing at Mazars Hong Kong; Jason Yau, Partner, Technology and Management Consulting at RSM Hong Kong; Douglas Kwan, Partner, Assurance and Advisory Services at SHINEWING (HK) CPA Limited; Steve Lo, Partner and Asia-Pacific Chief Innovation Officer at Ernst & Young; and Loretta Fong, Partner and Telecommunications Leader at PwC Hong Kong.
If you would like to join the 2021 awards and be acclaimed for your company’s exceptional technological innovations, please email Julie Anne Nuñez at [email protected].