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Firstbank targets 500,000 agents to boost financial inclusion

First Bank of Nigeria Limited has announced its drive to get up to 500,000 operators on board its agent banking platform.

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Firstbank targets 500,000 agents to boost financial inclusion

With a view to enhance financial inclusion across the country, First Bank of Nigeria Limited has announced its drive to get up to 500,000 operators on board its agent banking platform. This was disclosed at the opening ceremony of the 12th Annual Conference of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) by FirstBank’s Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Adesola Adeduntan, who also served as the Chairman of the CIBN 2019 Conference Consultative Committee. The event was held in Abuja on 24 – 25 September 2019.

The CIBN conference themed: “the future of the Nigerian banking industry – 360o” had Professor Yemi Osinbajo, Vice President, Federal Republic of Nigeria as the Special Guest of Honour.

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In his remarks, the Bank’s CEO said FirstBank would support all efforts to ensure effective financial inclusion in Nigeria.

According to Adeduntan “we have a very ambitious plan to appoint about 500,000 agents across the nook and cranny of our country and to ensure that banking facilities and services are made available to all Nigerians.”

He noted that the banking sector in Nigeria remained the primary partner to the government with regards to economic growth and development in the country. “If we do not utilise those opportunities and mainstream them properly, the country and the entire economy will be left behind,” Adeduntan stated.

In 2017, FirstBank launched its agent banking network; ‘Firstmonie Agent’, described as its ‘Human ATM’. The Firstmonie Agents are empowered to extend access to finance to all Nigerians, regardless of where they may be across the country. The Firstmonie Agents complement the Bank’s effort at reducing the unbanked in the country, whilst providing a handful of the Bank’s bespoke financial services, including; account opening; cash deposit; airtime purchase; bills payment; withdrawals and money transfer.

According to the Bank, FirstMonie Agents are usually owners of small businesses within communities with limited or no banking penetration. The Bank has an Agent Banking strength of over 31,000 Agents, spread across 98% of the country’s 774 Local Government Areas (LGAs).

 

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NM Partners

COVID-19: Cititrust supports NGO to procure PPE for health workers

Speaking during the occasion, Group Chief Executive of the company, Mr Yemi Adefisan, said Cititrust Group had earlier donated food items to Lagos and Osun state governments, and cash to the CBN COVID-19 account.

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Cititrust Group

Cititrust Holdings Plc has reaffirmed its commitment to supporting both public and private initiatives in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic with the donation of one million naira for the purchase of personal protective equipment (PPE) for frontline health care workers.

The cheque was handed over to a non-governmental organisation, Health Emergency Initiative (HEI) at the company’s corporate headquarters in Lagos, on Tuesday, June 2.

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HEI, a recipient of Best Supporting NGO Award by Lagos State Health Service Commission, partners the Federal Road Safety Corps, Lagos State Ambulance Service, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency and other relevant agencies to ensure that critically injured accident victims receive prompt life-saving care in public health institutions.

Speaking during the occasion, Group Chief Executive of the company, Mr Yemi Adefisan, said Cititrust Group had earlier donated food items to Lagos and Osun state governments, and cash to the CBN COVID-19 account.

Adefisan said the current gesture was Cititrust’s contribution to an emergency trust fund set up by HEI to provide much-needed PPE for frontline health workers in Lagos State.

Also speaking at the event, chairman of Cititrust COVID-19 Response Committee, Mr. Kunle Adewole, said the company was proud to work with credible organisations like HEI in ensuring that critical needs of frontline health workers are promptly met.

According to him, records show that the organisation has donated PPE to LUTH, LASUTH, FMC Ebute Metta, FRSC and IDH, Yaba, “hence, Cititrust has no doubt that donated funds will be judiciously utilised”.

He said the company would continue to “explore other areas of critical needs in the COVID-19 response and healthcare sector in general with a view to rendering its corporate support”.

In his own comments, the Founder/Executive Director of HEI, Mr Paschal Achunine, thanked the management of Cititrust for its “unrelenting support for the social well-being of Nigerians”.

He disclosed that other services offered by HEI include assisting indigent patients in public hospitals, particularly children, who could have died of infections like malaria, sepsis, typhoid fever, pneumonia, tetanus, diarrhea, cholera, among others.

According to Achunine, over 485 patients have benefited from HEI’s intervention, including 210 children across 27 hospitals in Lagos State.

He used the occasion to solicit the support of other corporate entities and individuals for the organisation.


EDITOR’S NOTE: This is a sponsored content.

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FirstBank leverages technology to promote virtual bank account opening for customers  

“Beyond opening an account in any of our over 700 branches, we are delighted with the investments at reinventing our business processes over the years, especially with the use of technology.”

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FirstBank

First Bank of Nigeria Limited, Nigeria’s premier and leading financial inclusion services provider, has announced that it has reinforced its technology infrastructure to enable anyone in the country open a FirstBank account through their mobile phones, without visiting any of its branches nationwide.

The investment in the Bank’s mobile banking infrastructure is in furtherance of the need to deepen financial inclusion in the country, enabling account opening to be carried out on its *894# USSD banking, FirstMobile (self-service telephone banking), its website – www.firstbanknigeria.com – as well as the Bank’s staff, through the Direct Sales Executive (DSE) application installed on their mobile phone, ATMs and the bank’s over 55,000 FirstMonie Agents spread across the country. Opening an account with FirstBank through any of these means is seamless, convenient, fast, and user-friendly.

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The DSE App is an end to end encrypted mobile application installed on the phone(s) of FirstBank staff which enables them to open an account for to-be customers. Upon the completion of the account opening process via the DSE App, the customer is notified of his or her account number through a text message on the mobile phone used to register the account.

READ ALSO: FirstBank enhances educational sector, supports schools with over N10 billion loan

With FirstBank’s *894# USSD banking, various banking activities are carried out on a mobile phone – across the four major GSM network operators in the country – without the use of the internet. To open an account via this means, dial *894# then select ‘open an account’ to provide the information required or by simply dialing *894*0#. The Bank currently has over 9.5 million of its nearly 20 million customers on its USSD banking platform.

The FirstMonie Agent Banking is an agent banking initiative from the bank that is designed to take banking closer to people, thereby bridging the gap between the banked and unbanked. FirstMonie is a channel through which various banking activities like FirstBank account opening, funds transfer, bill payments, data, and call credit recharge services, amongst others are carried out. The Agent Banking initiative has also contributed to reducing poverty, being responsible for the indirect employment of over 150,000 people across the country.

According to Chuma Ezirim, Group Executive, e-Business & Retail Products, First Bank of Nigeria Limited, “beyond opening an account in any of our over 700 branches, we are delighted with the investments at reinventing our business processes over the years, especially with the use of technology. This has been critical to staying relevant in the industry for over 126 years and being the financial partner of the first choice to all our customers and Nigerians, irrespective of where they are.”

Creating these virtual ways of opening a bank account with us – thus; the staff DSE App, ATMs, FirstMonie Agents, *894# USSD banking, FirstMobile and our website – reinforces our resolve to ensure that more Nigerians and residents have access to banking, especially through our state of the art financial services and we remain resolute to being the key to banking, enabling business and financial activities that would continue to propel the country’s economic growth and development.

READ ALSO: Nigerian banking stocks remain most liquid stocks, as investors gain N25.1 billion

About FirstBank: 

First Bank of Nigeria Limited (FirstBank) is the premier Bank in West Africa and the leading financial inclusion services provider in Nigeria for over 125 years.

With over 750 business locations and 55,000 Banking Agents spread across 99% of the 774 Local Government Areas in Nigeria, FirstBank provides a comprehensive range of retail and corporate financial services to serve its over 15 million customers. The Bank has international presence through its subsidiaries, FBN Bank (UK) Limited in London and Paris, FBNBank in the Republic of Congo, Ghana, The Gambia, Guinea, Sierra-Leone and Senegal, as well as a Representative Office in Beijing.

The Bank has been nimble at promoting digital payment in the country and has issued over 10million cards, the first bank to achieve such a milestone in the country. FirstBank’s cashless transaction drive extends to having more than 9.5million people on its USSD banking service through the nationally renowned *894# banking service and over 3.5 million people on Firstmobile platform.

Since its establishment in 1894, FirstBank has consistently built relationships with customers focusing on the fundamentals of good corporate governance, strong liquidity, optimised risk management, and leadership. Over the years, the Bank has led the financing of private investment in infrastructure development in the Nigerian economy by playing key roles in the Federal Government’s privatisation and commercialisation schemes. With its global reach, FirstBank provides prospective investors wishing to explore the vast business opportunities that are available in Nigeria, an internationally competitive world-class brand, and a credible financial partner.

FirstBank has been named “Most Valuable Bank Brand in Nigeria” six times in a row (2011 – 2016) by the globally renowned “The Banker Magazine” of the Financial Times Group; “Best Retail Bank in Nigeria” for seven consecutive years (2011 – 2017) by the Asian Banker International Excellence in Retail Financial Services Awards and “Best Bank in Nigeria” by Global Finance for 15 years. Our brand purpose is to always put customers, partners and stakeholders at the heart of our business, even as we standardise customer experience and excellence in financial solutions across sub-Saharan Africa, in consonance with our brand vision “To be the partner of first choice in building your future”. Our brand promise is to always deliver the ultimate “gold standard” of value and excellence. This commitment is anchored on our inherent values of passion, partnership, and people, to position You First in every respect.


Folake Ani-Mumuney

Group Head, Marketing & Corporate Communications

www.firstbanknigeria.com

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UPDC reaps benefits of NSE’s resilience with listing of N16 billion Rights Issue

“We congratulate the Management and Team at UACN Property Development Company Plc, as well as the professional parties to the issue for the successful completion of the transaction.” – Oscar Onyema, CEO of the NSE.

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Nigerian stock exchange (NSE), Making the best out of the Nigerian Stock Market during COVID-19 , Dangote, Tier-1 banks lead the bulls to close Nigerian stock market green

UACN Property Development Company Plc (UPDC) has become yet another beneficiary of The Nigerian Stock Exchange’s (NSE or The Exchange) commitment to provide continued access to capital even in the face of COVID-19.

The company successfully listed its N16 billion Rights Issue of 15,961,574,145 Ordinary Shares of 50 kobo each at N=1.00 per Share on the NSE platform on Tuesday, 2 June 2020 shares of 50 kobo each at N=1.00 per Share on the NSE platform on Tuesday, 2 June 2020.

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Speaking at the virtual Closing Gong ceremony to commemorate the listing, the Chief Executive Officer, NSE, Mr. Oscar N. Onyema, OON commented, “We congratulate the Management and Team at UACN Property Development Company Plc, as well as the professional parties to the issue for the successful completion of the transaction. At the NSE, we prioritize our responsibility to support the development of Issuers, Dealing Member Firms and the investing public, and we continue to work assiduously to respond to the needs of our stakeholders at every time. We are, therefore, pleased to provide support to UPDC on this successful capital raise, and we remain committed to providing opportunities for trading activities across multiple asset classes – equities, bonds, ETFs.”

READ ALSO: Seplat denies swindling FG of N600 billion despite co-conspirator’s guilty plea

Commenting on the transaction, the Group Managing Director, UPDC, Mr. Folasope Aiyesimoji said, “I am deeply honoured to virtually sound the Closing Gong at the NSE today. The innovation and forward-thinking displayed by The Exchange in harnessing technology to make this possible is truly commendable. We at UPDC are excited about the milestone we have achieved today, and we are confident that the funds raised will further strengthen our capital structure and position us for growth. We count ourselves fortunate to be listed on the NSE which exposes us to a wide pool of investors and funding options. We must also commend the NSE for its efforts in building investor confidence which has made it possible for us to access this capital. We are grateful for the trust reposed in us by investors and we are keen to get on with the invaluable projects this capital will support.”

The Exchange remains focused on leveraging technology and business innovation to sustain full operations during this pandemic. Since the activation of its Business Continuity Plan which saw the transition to remote trading and working in March, the NSE has enjoyed seamless operations on the back of electronic platforms such as FIX Protocol, X-NET, and the newly implemented Virtual Private Network (VPN). The NSE digital Closing Gong ceremony also attests to the resilience of the NSE’s technology platforms with UPDC being the third company to feature in the series following Sterling Bank and FBNQuest Merchant Bank.

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