MANAMA: Islamic financial institutions still lag far behind in marketing, with companies struggling to compete with their conventional counterparts in product development.
That is one of the conclusions of a survey by MTI Consulting which will be launched at the 16th World Islamic Banking Conference which opens in Bahrain on Sunday.
Some 55 per cent of the respondents said Islamic finance product development has not gone beyond Islamisation of conventional products.
"What is more alarming is the fact 57pc of the respondents agreed Islamic finance product development is not backed by any consumer research," said MTI Consulting chief executive officer Hilmy Cader.
"Like most companies around the globe today, Islamic financial institutions have also had their marketing and advertising budgets trimmed. Forty-eight per cent of respondents said the advertising budgets of their companies have been decreased over the last 12 months. Looking forward 87pc of the respondents feel their companies will maintain or increase their advertising budget in the next two years."