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Ithmaar Bank website bags two international awards

Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, earned prestigious international awards for its new, customer-focused interactive website when it was named the Silver winner in two separate categories at the high-profile W3 Awards.

The W3 Awards are prestigious international awards which honour creative excellence on the web, and recognises institutions behind award-winning sites, marketing programmes, social content, mobile site/apps and online videos. The Awards are judged by the Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts (AIVA), an invitation-only body consisting of top-tier professionals from a “Who’s Who” of acclaimed media, interactive, advertising, and marketing firms.

At the Awards ceremony, Ithmaar Bank’s website, which was designed by Spark Digitus, bagged two Silver Awards, the first in the General Website category for the Best Banking and Bill Payment website, which provides an interactive platform for the end-user to make bill payments and conduct banking transactions with ease. The second, was awarded for the Best User Experience under the Website Features category. The Ithmaar Bank website was judged on the basis of creativity, usability, navigation, functionality, visual design and ease of use.

The Awards were collected on behalf of Ithmaar Bank by Spark Digitus Managing Partner and Chief Creative Officer, Aamir Shehzad, who presented them to Ithmaar Bank Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Abdul Rahim, at the Bank’s headquarters in Al Seef District.

The W3 Awards 2014, received more than 4,000 entries from leading world-wide advertising agencies, public relations firms, interactive agencies, in-house creative professionals, web designers, graphic designers and web enthusiasts.

“We are pleased to have won these prestigious awards which provide international recognition for user-friendly, customer-focused banking services website,” said Abdul Rahim. “At Ithmaar, we are committed to becoming the region’s premier Islamic retail bank and we recognise the significance of our website as the first interactive interface with our customers. Developing the most innovative and responsive website possible is part of our commitment to becoming the Islamic retail bank of choice and to realising our customer’s expectations,” he said.

The new Ithmaar Bank website automatically adapts itself to the size of the users screen to provide easier, more intuitive navigation includes innovative functionalities which can be viewed across multiple platforms including smart phones, tablets and desktops.

“We take great pride in having the opportunity to work with Ithmaar Bank on this important project in developing a brand new, cutting-edge website,” said Shehzad. “We are delighted that the new website provides the Bank’s customers a better, more engaging online banking experience and further reinforces Ithmaar Bank’s position as pioneering Islamic retail bank,” he said.

“Visitors to the website will find key business information presented in a clear and logical manner, as well as intuitive navigation through smart menus and contact information, including an-easy-to-use interactive branch locator map, online chat, registration for eStatement and Ithmaar mobile app downloads,” said Abdul Rahim. “Most importantly, extreme care was taken to maintain the website security,” he said.

According to published AIVA statements, the Award contribute to improving the excellence in the global industry. AIVA Executive Director Linda Day praised the awards and said the Academy is delighted to recognise creative excellence on the Web, and are excited to witness all the amazing work being done throughout the industry. She congratulated the 2014 W3 Award entrants and winners for their contributions and commitment to the online world.