In order to meet the 95% target for financial inclusion by 2024 set by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the country needs to accelerate the current growth rate in the industry, said the General Manager, Mobile Financial Services, MTN Nigeria, Usoro Usoro.
Usoro disclosed this during an interactive virtual session by The Economist Intelligence Unit based on a report titled “State of Play: Fintech in Nigeria” sponsored by MTN Nigeria and Mastercard.
The webinar hosted by Camelia Oros, Managing Director, CT Productions featured presentations by Irene Mia, Global Editorial Director, Thought Leadership and Melanie Noronha, Senior Editor, Thought Leadership, EMEA both of The Economist Intelligence Unit.
The webinar also featured presentations by Usoro Usoro, General Manager, Mobile Financial Services, MTN Nigeria and Senior Vice President, General Manager, West Africa, Mastercard, Ebehijie Momoh.
The session reviewed topics tackled in the Nigerian Fintech report while assessing both industry drivers and impediments to further growth.
Addressing participants at the session, Usoro Usoro remarked, “Fintech and financial inclusion is an important area for MTN Nigeria. We always see ourselves as a company that drives economic growth and development everywhere we operate. Working with The Economist team and similar stakeholders to produce reports such as this stimulate debate and conversation around the challenges in the sector and how we can work together as an industry to drive our desired objectives”.
He further explained that “The CBN’s National Financial Inclusion Strategy which was revised in 2019 has set a financial inclusion target to 95% by 2024. It is barely five years from now and we need a collaborative approach by stakeholders in the industry to ensure that all players can leverage their various assets to meet that target. Relatively, Nigeria has more sophisticated products than many other countries on the continent. The challenge is in accessibility and how these products will not only improve convenience for the already banked but further drive inclusion while addressing how we can bring these last batch of 40 million customers that are traditionally excluded into the fold. Overall, I think we are in the right direction, and studies such as this serve the purpose of stimulating conversation that will provide solutions to the challenges we face as an industry”.
Plans to launch the report to a wide selection of stakeholders in the Nigerian Fintech industry were underway but had to be postponed due to the restrictions posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Economist Intelligence Unit confirmed that details of the physical event will be shared at a later date.
UBA denies report linking Bank, Tony Elumelu to N41bn NITEL fraud
The United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc has denied the report credited to the chairman of the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions, Senator Ayo Akinyelure, alleging the bank’s involvement and the indictment of its chairman Tony Elumelu in a N41 billion Nigerian Telecommunications Limited (NITEL) fraud.
According to a report by THE WITNESS, Mr Elumelu’s lawyers demanded a public apology and retraction of the claim within seven days of receipt of the letter or face legal action.
The said reports credited to Akinyelure alleged the amount was withdrawn “systematically from NITEL for nine years” under the leadership of the UBA.
“Our Client is shocked by this false, baseless, and mischievous allegation as neither him nor any of the organisations associated with him has ever been involved in or indicted for any fraud as was falsely alleged by Senator Ayo Akinyelure,” the letter by Elumelu’s lawyers read.
“Our Client is also alarmed and appalled by this deliberate peddling of falsehood and misinformation against an unblemished personal and business reputation, painstakingly built by our Client over several decades with great personal sacrifice and unquestionable integrity.
“Our Client has instructed us to, and we have demanded an immediate open, public and unreserved retraction of the said statements credited to Senator Akinyelure and an apology from Senator Akinyelure for this false allegation and defamation of our Client,” it added.
Group Managing Director/CEO of UBA, Kennedy Uzoka, is due to appear before the Senate committee on Wednesday.
[Source: The Witness]
Fintech1000plus honours three telecom network operators, members
Fintech1000plus, Nigeria’s foremost informal association in the banking, financial and allied technology sector recently honoured three telecommunication companies and some of its members following their immense contributions, sacrifies and support in the association’s CSR COVID-19 intervention for the NCDC.
Leading the honours list as Fintech1000plus Heroes are; Airtel, MTN, Gobalcom, Rev. Sunday Folayan, Sola Fanawopo and other volunteers.
The awards were presented by Abubakar Suleiman, Managing Director Sterling Bank plc and Omoke Adebanjo, Mastercard Senior Vice President, Regional Franchise Lead (Middle East & Africa). Both are members of Fintech1000plus.
Speaking at the virtual event which was held recently, Iyin Aboyeji, Founder Future Africa and member Fintech1000plus said, “after some weeks after COVID-19 hit the country we observed some technology challenges which the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) was having. They included; inability to efficiently disseminate mass media communication & information to all mobile phones concurrently, and incidence reporting which includes; tracking, tracing and citizens action points.”
The association after discussing among its members and interacting with the NCDC decided to put together a number of front-end interfaces that will rapidly use the Covid-19 Risk Assessment triage to quickly analyze information from the public, while storing the information in a backend database for subsequent analysis and follow-up.
The front ends were made up of; Interactive Voice Response system (IVR), USSD application in major Nigerian languages, desktop tools for web-based access, and a mobile APP.
Moreover, as much as possible, make the front ends toll free or ZERO cost to the people, and for the telcos to make the portal access free for such incident response systems.
Acknowledging the outcome of the Fintech1000plus support, the Director General of NCDC, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, commended the association, its telecom partners and volunteers for a job well done.
“The fight against COVID-19 is not a government or public sector battle alone. But that of every stakeholder of the Nigeria project. Fintech1000plus support is well appreciated and a commendable partnership from the private sector. It is our wish that such will continue, not just during this COVID-19 pandemic but in other areas in future”, he said.
Fintech1000plus is an informal association of professionals in the financial technology sector that adopts a pragmatic approach to solving problems, especially those that impact the ability of Nigerians to do business and make payments and Settlements Electronically.
In line with its CSR activities, it played significant roles in the fight against the global Covid-19 pandemic working with NCDC.
Zenith Bank unveils ‘Zenith Beta Life’, promo to reward customers weekly
Zenith Bank Plc, Nigeria’s leading financial institution, has commenced its “Zenith Beta Life” Promo to reward customers of the Bank with gifts every week starting from 31st July 2020 to 30th July 2021.
During this period, fifty (50) customers will be selected via raffle draw each week and rewarded with gifts worth NGN30,000.
The Promo is open to existing and new Zenith Bank customers with the following raffle qualifying criteria:
- maintain a minimum deposit of NGN5,000 for the period;
- request and collect a Zenith Bank Card; and
- download and register on the Zenith Mobile App or register for *966# EazyBanking.
Zenith Bank Plc is recognised as one of the most customer-focused financial institutions in the country and was voted the most customer-focused bank in Nigeria for the retail and SME segments in the 2018 KPMG Annual Banking Industry Customer Satisfaction Survey (BICSS).
A clear leader in the digital space with several firsts in the deployment of innovative products, solutions and an assortment of alternative channels that ensure convenience, speed and safety of transactions, Zenith Bank has clearly distinguished itself in the Nigerian financial services industry through superior service quality, unique customer experience and sound financial indices.
In recognition of its track record of excellent performance, Zenith Bank was voted as the Best Commercial Bank in Nigeria 2019 by the World Finance and the Best Digital Bank in Nigeria 2019 by Agusto and Co.
The Bank was also recognised as Bank of the Year and Best in Retail Banking at the 2019 BusinessDay Banks and Other Financial Institutions (BOFI) Awards.
More recently, the Bank emerged as the Most Valuable Banking Brand in Nigeria, for the third consecutive year, in the Banker Magazine “Top 500 Banking Brands 2020”, number one Bank in Nigeria by Tier-1 Capital in the “2020 Top 1000 World Banks” Ranking published by The Banker Magazine, Best Bank in Nigeria 2020 in the Global Finance World’s Best Banks Awards 2020, and Bank of the Decade (People’s Choice) at the ThisDay Awards 2020.
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