Middle East corporations to witness substantial rise in risk management initiatives
SAS, the leading provider of business intelligence and analytic software and services, has forecasted that the Middle East is set to witness a substantial rise in risk management initiatives among regional corporations, as more organisations focus on aggregating and controlling risks to drive their business’ development. With the current global credit crisis triggering more than USD 400 billion in asset write-downs among the financial services industry, Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) programs and components are in high-demand now more than ever to help institutions in the Middle East aggregate risk and treat it holistically. Today, adopting an ERM system is regarded by the region’s largest businesses as protection against damaged reputation and as a valuable tool that offers an integrated approach to efficiently allocate capital and facilitate better loss containment.
A global research commissioned by SAS revealed that regional firms are recognising the advantages of integrated risk programs, which have gone beyond offering quantitative benefits. According to the study conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit, over 70 percent of the 316 financial services executives who were surveyed believe that failures to address risk management issues have largely contributed to the current global credit crisis. Consequently, 59 percent of the survey respondents had been prompted to scrutinise their risk management practices in greater detail. Designed to facilitate a more effective risk management framework, SAS’ Enterprise Risk Management portfolio embeds risk management into everyday processes at all levels of the organisation.
“The increasingly challenging financial landscape across the globe has ushered the rise of enterprise risk management solutions through its capacity to generate better, more up-to-date analysis of risk,” said Shukri Dabaghi, General Manager, SAS - Middle East. “Enterprise risk management has taken on new importance as stockholders, boards of directors and regulators demand better, more timely analysis of risk and a deeper understanding of how the institution is impacted by the dynamic risk environment of a global financial community. The adoption of SAS risk management programs and components are highly important now more than ever. As such, we at SAS are looking forward to providing companies in the Middle East with adequate resources to perform adequate risk assessment and management.”
The survey also showed that access to relevant, timely and consistent data have been identified by many executives at financial services firms as the major obstacles that hinder the advancement of risk management practices in their organisations. Furthermore, the respondents have also identified data and company culture as one of the challenges that affects the implementation of comprehensive risk approaches, with almost half of the respondents believing that fostering a culture of risk management is the most widely encountered challenge. As closer inspection from regulators push many institutions into revisiting their risk management practices, SAS has expressed its readiness to deploy technology-driven enterprise risk management solutions for regional companies.
“The Middle East has a dynamic economy, which makes it even more important for institutions in the region to implement integrated risk programs. This survey is evidence that the risk management needs of financial institutions are evolving and transcending mere regulatory risks, making a firm-wide risk view highly crucial. This kind of high impact risk management efficiency is what we offer clients through our Enterprise Risk Management portfolio, which entails more than balancing risk and reward and goes beyond regulatory compliance,” concluded Dabaghi.
SAS’ extensive experience and expertise in risk management has earned it a place in the Leaders Quadrant of the Magic Quadrant for Operational Risk Management Software for Financial Services by Gartner Inc. In addition, the company has also bagged the top position in Chartis Research's report Credit Risk Management Systems 2008 for retail banking for the fourth straight year. The momentum for SAS in the operational risk management space was also evidenced by doubling revenue growth in operational risk sales for 2007 and securing the leadership position in Chartis' Operational Risk Management Systems 2008 for the fourth straight year.
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