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Datuk Wira (Dr.) Aria Putera Ismail, ADFIAP 3rd Vice Chair

The Association of Development Financing Institutions in Asia and the Pacific (ADFIAP) recently announced the appointment of Dr. Aria Putera Ismail as its 3rd Vice Chair. Dr. Aria, the President and Chief Executive Officer of SME Bank Malaysia, brings a wealth of experience and a visionary approach, championing growth and development focused on digitalization and innovation. Dr. Aria has been instrumental in leading SME Bank to become a national leader in the SME ecosystem.

Datuk Wira (Dr.) Aria Putera Ismail joined SME Bank as the Group President and CEO in late 2018, leveraging his extensive experience in the banking and investment industry. Having served as the president, director, and CEO of Maybank Syariah Indonesia and Director of Global Markets at Maybank Islamic, Dr. Aria brought a passion for fintech and a deep understanding of the SME landscape. His appointment as the leader of the SME Bank marked a turning point in the bank’s journey toward creating value for Malaysia’s SMEs.

Under Dr. Aria’s leadership, SME Bank has continued its digital transformation journey, placing accessibility and convenience at the forefront. Recognizing the importance of seamless financing processes for SMEs, the Centre for Entrepreneur Development & Research (CEDAR), a subsidiary of SME Bank, launched ScoreXcess in late 2019. This AI-powered application streamlines the financing process, making it easier for SMEs to access much-needed funding. In less than a year, ScoreXcess has garnered over 1,000 applications, showcasing its effectiveness in meeting the financing needs of SMEs.


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