Bal Krishen, Chairman & CEO, Century Financial

Please share a profile on your field of business and how you came into your current role.

Century Financial’s journey in the UAE’s investment domain has been an incredible one, driven by our unwavering commitment to personalised customer experiences and a passionate vision for the future of investment services. I owe much of my own success to our remarkable team and loyal clients, who have been the pillars of our growth. Our team’s dedication and hard work have shaped our company, while our client’s trust and loyalty have propelled us forward. Starting as a dealer in 1999, I’ve witnessed my own journey intertwine with Century’s growth, from various roles to now serving as CEO and Chairman. Together, we remain dedicated to exceeding our clients’ expectations and embracing the future with enthusiasm, knowing that our collective effort has brought us to where we stand today.

What are the challenges you perceive in your field of business, and how are you planning to meet them?

In our remarkable three-decade journey, Century Financial has borne witness to the dynamic phases of the UAE’s economic evolution. In today’s swiftly changing financial landscape, success hinges upon agility, adaptability, and innovation. Foreseeing these challenges, we are leading Century on a path of exploration into innovative business segments. We are actively metamorphosing into a tech-driven company, fusing human intelligence with artificial intelligence to create a revolutionary super app that caters to all the trading and investment needs of our valued investors. We’re introducing algo trading with lightning-fast accuracy and minimal latency to elevate our customer experience, prioritising precision and data quality.

Furthermore, with our dedicated in-house tech team, we are fervently recruiting the best talent to align with our organisation’s vision and work with unwavering zeal. We are on the cusp of harnessing the power of AI and machine learning, reaffirming our commitment to redefining the user experience in financial services.

State three things that you could offer to help incentivise your team in their quest for excellence.

I firmly believe in the boundless potential that resides within each member of our cherished Century family. Through a steadfast commitment to continuous learning and growth, my goal is to empower every individual to reach the pinnacle of their professional abilities.

Throughout my journey here, I’ve held dear the principles of compassionate leadership. I am dedicated to nurturing an environment where open dialogue, mental well-being, and the unity of our team stand as paramount values. I am dedicated to equipping everyone with the tools for excellence and fostering a culture where we collectively cultivate more leaders within our organization.

We firmly believe that our company’s enduring success lies in our dedication to cultivating an empowering and uplifting workplace where growth and positivity flourish. As a result, we are consistently ranked as a top organisation in the annual Great Place to Work evaluations, year after year, reflecting our unwavering commitment to fostering a thriving environment for all.

How primed is the UAE as a hub for business and entrepreneurship?

I’ve personally witnessed the UAE undergo significant growth and development, particularly in sectors like finance and technology, which provide fantastic opportunities for entrepreneurs. Reflecting on my own life journey, which began in the picturesque landscapes of Jammu and Kashmir and eventually led me to the role of leading Century Financial, I believe it showcases the vast potential this nation offers to individuals who aspire to achieve great things.

So, if you have big dreams, a clear vision of your goals, and the determination to persist through challenges, the UAE is a place where you can turn those dreams into reality.

How has your organisation/business contributed towards the growth of the UAE under your leadership?

As pioneers in investment services in the UAE, Century was among the first companies to introduce global financial investment to local investors. Throughout our journey, we’ve empowered countless clients and investors through informative seminars and webinars, equipping them with the knowledge needed to navigate the ever-shifting global financial terrain. Together, we continue to create pathways to financial empowerment and success.

We’ve evolved and thrived, leaving our mark in both financial services and technology, achieving milestones that inspire us to reach even greater heights. While our success in shaping the financial landscape of the UAE is undeniable, I firmly believe our true impact lies in setting new industry standards, championing ethics, and driving technological innovations to elevate the customer experience.

What is the growth trajectory you have charted for your organisation over the next five years?

As I gaze towards the future, I see Century Financial strengthening its foothold in the vibrant landscape of UAE’s financial sector. Over the next five years, our vision is to transform our investors’ experiences into something truly delightful. We aim to identify any gaps, offering innovative investment solutions that simplify their lives, such as the introduction of a super app that caters to all their investment and trading needs.

Our roadmap includes forward-looking expansions, the introduction of cutting-edge financial products, and venturing into new domains. With a sharp focus on digital transformation, we are determined to create an innovative integrated investment platform. This underscores our unwavering commitment to continually meet the evolving needs of our cherished clients. Together, we embark on an inspiring journey towards financial excellence and lasting success.

As a UAE corporate icon, what is the legacy you wish to leave for future managers and team heads at your firm?

I aspire for my legacy to reveal the incredible power of hard work, determination, and compassionate leadership, extending beyond mere business success. My hope is for everyone at Century Financial to not only excel in their careers but also to embrace kindness and empathy in their professional roles.

My own journey, starting from humble beginnings and culminating in the leadership of one of the UAE’s premier financial firms, serves as proof that with a dream, unwavering dedication, and a commitment to doing our best, anyone can accomplish remarkable feats. I want to underscore that if someone like me, who began with very little, can attain such a level of success, it signifies that each and every one of us holds the potential to achieve our aspirations. Together, let’s ignite the spirit of dreaming big and transforming those dreams into reality.