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Home arrow Business & Finance arrow The art of RF (riba-free) Islamic banking and finance


LARIBA has pioneered and is actively popularizing and supporting the RF (riba-free) Movement to introduce the unique features of RF principles and lifestyle to people of all faiths and walks of life. This movement represents an important tool for inviting people to a new lifestyle through RF finance and banking. It is a comprehensive approach that includes reaching out to customers in all communities and sharing the LARIBA vision through words and actions.

The company background is offered here for our readers in order to guide all those who want to start the same effort in their communities. Experience at LARIBA has shown that it is indeed possible to start small community-based RF finance companies that will offer RF financing to assist the community members to live an RF life style. The building and loan societies (later called savings and loan) and the credit union movement started in a similar fashion but lacked the RF discipline and vision. They slowly emerged as another category of riba-based banks competing with the riba-based commercial banks.

LARIBA was founded in 1987 by a group of American community members in southern California. It is the first ever RF finance company in the history America. In 1987, your author (also known as the Father of Islamic banking in America) started the company with a humble investment of $200,000 collected from close friends who invested $10,000 to $20,000 each.

The company represents a new and pioneering RF American Movement to popularize a new liberating lifestyle — the RF Lifestyle — to all Americans, which includes a new brand and culture of banking — RF finance and banking. The following are some of the RF finance services featured by LARIBA:

■ LARIBA derives its capital and financial resources from shareholders and investors in America within its community. There are no investments from outside the United States.

■ The LARIBA RF finance model is unique in that it does not start from the use interest rates and use it as a process to “rent money.” We start from the actual rental value of a similar property in same location to establish the prudence of the investment.

■ LARIBA has created a new domain in RF financing — RF mortgage financing, with its brand new nomenclature, algorithms, programs, and disciplines.

■ The staff members of LARIBA and Bank of Whittier are graduates from the better local universities in our communities. They come from multicultural backgrounds with proven track records as professionals with solid family background, community servants, and distinguished students. They share an unwavering commitment to the belief in living an RF lifestyle and in serving the community.

■ LARIBA conducts the whole RF finance process in-house, including credit application accepting, processing, underwriting, funding, and, finally, servicing the relationship. LARIBA does not sell the servicing of the credits (loans) originated.

■ LARIBA, as a community service company, ensures that its customers and prospects are able to access any of the company's team members at all levels, from finance officers, underwriters, servicing managers, senior executives, the president, and the chief executive officer to Shari'aa scholars.

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