In line with the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) financial inclusion programme, Stanbic IBTC Bank has floated @ease wallet to achieve the agenda of the apex bank, the Executive Director, Personal and Business Banking for Stanbic IBTC, Wole Adeniyi said.

Stanbic IBTC, a member of the Standard Bank Group, set up the @ease wallet to deepen its penetration among the underserved community in Nigeria, whom CBN’s financial inclusion programme was established to cater for.

Nairametrics had reported CBN’s effort to expand financial opportunities to this population, especially at a period the government is campaigning for cashless policy. Apart from banks, telecommunication companies and fintechs have also been given approval to participate in the mobile banking operation that also drives the financial inclusion programme.

Stanbic IBTC floats new digital initiative to support CBN’s financial inclusion plan

What you need to know: With the last 10 digits of a phone number, @ease wallet will provide a range of services to the underbanked and the unbanked population. Also, at any location in Nigeria, account holders of Stanbic IBTC can open a Stanbic IBTC @ease wallet through USSD (Unstructured Supplementary Service Data) Code application: *909#.

Other options available to open or access the @ease wallet is through Stanbic IBTC @ease App and Agent banking across Nigeria.

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[READ MORE: CBN sets up committee to recover N36 billion credit facility]

About @ease wallet: The Stanbic IBTC account holders with @ease wallet will be able to access various banking services which include interbank transfers, debit card issuance and cardless withdrawals from Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) or the Agent Network, and many more.

For users of other banks, the @ease wallet brings no uniqueness to the table. It’s just same old digital innovation that saturates the banking industry and scatters across other banks in Nigeria. However, for Stanbic IBTC customers, this is a welcome development.

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Speaking about the essence of the digital initiative, Adeniyi was quoted“The Stanbic IBTC @ease wallet is a financial freedom vehicle for all Nigerians to access seamless financial services.

“This service is available to every Nigerian that can legally own a bank account. Following the product launch, there will be a series of Market and Campus Activations starting from the Lagos International Trade Fair, where we will introduce an array of products to visitors and exhibitors at the fair.

“We recognise the daily complexities of living in a fast-paced digital society. Stanbic IBTC @ease Wallet covers a unique range of mobile financial transactions, it is intuitive and designed around the needs of the average Nigerian.”

The battle of digital innovations: The advancement of technology has expanded the scope of banking in Nigeria. This has led to all banks in the country rolling out digital innovations that will enable them compete better in the financial sector as Payment Service Bank (PSBs) and Fintechs enter the market.

So Stanbic IBTC’s @ease wallet won’t be the last, as more banks will want to improve on their previous digital innovations. GTBank, UBA, First Bank, Zenith, Access Bank and many other banks have their own specific digital platforms that serves as wallet to their customers or account holders that provides same functions.

But regardless of the number of digital initiatives these banks develop, if services aren’t tailored to meet the needs of the middle-class, – whom the banks seem to be losing to Fintechs – their digital innovations would have no positive impact in luring customers.

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