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FCMB Wins “Best SME Bank in Africa” Award

The Bank won the prestigious award at the Asian Banker Middle East and Africa Regional Awards held virtually on November 5, 2020.

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First City Monument Bank (FCMB), a foremost financial services provider in Nigeria, has been voted as the Best SME Bank in Africa. The Bank won the prestigious award at the Asian Banker Middle East and Africa Regional Awards held virtually on November 5, 2020. The development is another confirmation of FCMB’s outstanding performance in offering exceptional services, including funding, capacity building and other value-added supports, to Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs).

The Asian Banker is an authoritative platform for strategic business information for the financial services industry worldwide. The annual Awards organised by the firm is one of the most comprehensive, transparent and respected in the industry covering the full spectrum of topics and areas that constitute the financial services system.

According to the Asian Banker, FCMB emerged as the Best SME Bank in Africa following, “series of online surveys across the region to gather feedback from thousands of customers per market. In the survey, we also asked customers to rate how well their main Banks have helped them during the crisis. The results and rankings are a true reflection of the voice of the customers”.

The organisers further stated that, “FCMB has introduced various digital initiatives into the SMEs segment, such as digital loan products (Quickloans) and its New Mobile banking platform. In addition, the Bank launched a platform, which was a first of its kind, to help women owned businesses scale up, by leveraging access to financing schemes, mentorship programmes, as well as training and networking opportunities. FCMB has equally helped SMEs to enhance capacity, thereby improving their business operations, connect with peers and access to trusted service professionals. The Bank has a 25% market share in the SME business, and in 2019 had more than 300,000 new accounts in this segment. We commend FCMB for its incredible contributions towards ensuring the growth and sustainable development of SMEs within the region”. 

Commenting on the award, the Managing Director of FCMB, Mr. Adam Nuru, described it as another milestone and a clear demonstration that the various strategic initiatives and solutions offered by the Bank are yielding the desired results and appreciated in Nigeria and internationally.

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According to him, “we are excited to have been recognised by the Asian Banker for our market leading propositions and support to SMEs, which continue to make real impact on businesses and the economy in general. This award is another validation that we are on track in our customer-centric approach to financial services delivery. We will continue to expand the frontiers of our innovation and go the extra mile to deploy offerings that consistently enhance customer experience. We thank the Asian Banker and the respondents for considering us worthy as the Best SME Bank in Africa. We dedicate this award to our customers who have made FCMB what it is today’’.

Speaking while receiving the award, the Executive Director, Business Development, FCMB, Mrs. Bukola Smith, stated that, “as a resilient, inclusive and responsive institution, we have continued to deploy solutions to transform the challenges posed by COVID-19 to opportunities for our customers by leveraging on our robust technology, digital transformation drive and highly professional team. Our SME Banking offerings have significantly changed lives through job and wealth creation, among other benefits. This is because, we believe that the only way we can succeed is when our customers succeed. We are very proud to be the Best SME Bank in Africa, particularly coming after KPMG rated us as the Best SME Bank in Nigeria in the 2019 Nigeria Banking Industry Customer Experience Survey report. This latest award will undoubtedly inspire us to perform better”. 

For more information about FCMB and its propositions for SMEs, please visit www.fcmb.com/business-banking.

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Ikeja Electric bags Most Philanthropic Disco award

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Ikeja Electric signs pact with Onigbongbo Residents Association

Ikeja Electric Plc (IE), Nigeria’s biggest Electricity Distribution Company has been adjudged the 2020 Philanthropic Electricity Distribution Company of the Year, at an Award Ceremony organized by CSR Reporters, a specialized news publication with concentration on how organizations and well-meaning individuals are giving back to the society.

According to the organizers, the award was given in recognition of IE efforts to give back to the society in which it operates. The citation read that Ikeja Electric was selected because it demonstrated integrity and transparency while engaging in several corporate social responsibility interventions in 2020.

“As you may know, many other companies were also nominated and because of the high caliber of the nominees, the Selection Committee deliberated long hours and gave careful consideration to all of them. Ikeja Electric stood out as a leader who exemplifies dedication to CSR,” the organizers said.

While thanking the organizers for the recognition, IE’s Head of Corporate Communications Felix Ofulue reiterated the company’s commitment to continue giving back to host communities through its Personal-Corporate Social Responsibility (P-CSR) interventions.

According to him: “We will continue to intensify efforts to make meaningful in the lives of the people and the society. Our P-CSR platform enables the company and employees to carry out charitable activities aimed at making considerable impact on the different levels of the society. Under the P-CSR programme, we also have a Volunteer Scheme (EVS) which enables our employees to voluntarily contribute their time and resources towards the wellbeing of the communities in which we operate. These goodwill activities further corroborate our commitment to touching lives in the environment where the company operates. No doubt, this will further strengthen the trust and mutual relationship between the company and communities.”

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He also urged the CSR Reporters to increase awareness in CSR activities as it will encourage other companies to recognize and contribute immensely to the development of communities where they operate.

In the recent past, Ikeja Electric has been carry out sustainable CSR initiatives, aimed at enhancing the quality of lives, in the key areas of Youth Empowerment, Healy and Primary Education

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Here’s why Leadway Pensure PFA should manage your Retirement Savings Account

With several pension fund administrators to pick from, here are 4 reasons why Leadway Pensure PFA Limited should be your first choice.

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Retirement Savings Account (RSA) holders with Leadway Pensure have every reason to smile as the firm continues to deliver excellent customer service and more importantly, high yield on investments.

In October, for instance, all RSA funds across multiple investments in the company outperformed their stipulated benchmarks. RSA I had 32% annualized return against a 25% benchmark; RSA II returned 25% against a 23% benchmark; RSA III returned 20% against a 15% benchmark, and RSA IV returned 18% against a 9% benchmark. This is really impressive, especially during this time of economic uncertainties.

Interestingly, the National Pension Commission has just opened the transfer window for RSA holders to freely transfer from their existing PFA to another one.

This transfer between PFAs can only happen once a year and is designed to help RSA holders assert the right to choose a Pension Fund Administrator with excellent service delivery and great returns.

What this signals is that there is absolutely no reason to keep a fund manager that does not offer competitive returns or does not give you a wholesome pension experience.

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With several pension fund administrators to pick from, however, it could be daunting deciding on which administrator to go with. You need not be flustered!

Here are 4 reasons why Leadway Pensure PFA Limited should be your first choice.

  • Brand Heritage – Leadway Pensure is part of the Leadway Group, a strong brand that has led the non-banking financial sector for 50 years. You see? Track record is top notch! Beyond that, Leadway Pensure is one of the most capitalized PFA’s in Nigeria with an authorized share capital of N2.0 Billion and shareholder’s fund in excess of N4.0 Billion, unimpaired by losses.
  • Competitive Returns – Leadway Pensure has consistently delivered returns above the inflation rate, thereby preserving the wealth of its customers. If you care about the returns on your investments, then Leadway Pensure is the right place to be
  • Customer Service – Leadway Pensure has won the best PFA in customer service back to back. Talk about excellent service delivery? Simply unrivaled!
  • Accessibility – Online Enrolment Portal, Mobile App, Interactive SMS, Pensure Online (P-Online), SureCal (Pensure Calculator) are all platforms that give you transparent access to your funds and your manager.

With Leadway Pensure PFA, you are assured of returns on investment and value protection from economic downturn.

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Need we say more? Choose Leadway Pensure PFA – choose comfort and wealth!

Visit https://joinus.leadway-pensure.com/ to learn more about how to move your Retirement Savings Account to us.

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Visa report highlights ecommerce as key to unlocking merchant revenue growth during the festive season

According to the VCA report, most small businesses have taken bold steps to prepare for the seasonal sales activity that kicks-off with Black Friday.

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If small businesses can provide easy access to information, frictionless payments, a simple returns policy, and personalized shopping options, they are likely to have an immediate advantage in the marketplace.

This is according to Visa Consulting & Analytics (VCA) report titled Accelerating the shift to eCommerce, where 81% of customers indicated they are willing to pay more for a good customer experience.

“Small and Medium-sized Businesses (SMBs) that leverage eCommerce solutions; which provide excellent online shopping experience for consumers; have the opportunity to benefit from high spend periods like Black Friday and the coming festive season compared to businesses who have not mastered the importance of holistic back-end design of the customer journey,” says Kemi Okusanya, Vice President, Visa West Africa.

The move to increased online shopping comes on the back of most retailers driving their customers online due to different lockdown restrictions that affected in store foot traffic. Visa’s  Covid 19 Impact Tracker, released earlier this year showed that up to 68% of consumers were going to grocery stores less often. As the retail sector looks to driving recovery, the approach to periods like Black Friday has also evolved and further necessitated safer, better online payment experiences.

“The impact of a bad payment experience can be devastating. When a shopper abandons an online shopping cart due to checkout friction, the data shows that 67% end up leaving for a competitor or never complete the purchase anywhere, and 59% say they are less likely to shop with that same retailer again,” adds Okusanya.

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It’s encouraging that most small businesses (60%), according to the VCA report, have taken bold steps to prepare for the seasonal sales activity that kicks-off with Black Friday. The preparation includes changing their infrastructure and digitizing their business.

“The VCA report highlights how the payment experience is a critical touchpoint – a part of the customer journey, which requires special attention. Each time a potential customer reaches the checkout page, they have a moment to reflect on whether the effort needed to make the payment is equal to the value they get from their purchase.  To win prospective and repeat customers, SMBs need to have a digital presence during the discovery and evaluation stages of the customer shopping journey,” concludes Okusanya.

Digital payments provide a convenient and secure way to pay for customers. For businesses, they reduce the friction arising from handling money, limit customer queuing, grow their customer base as a result of enhanced experience and eventually improve sales and profitability. As online shopping becomes the norm for consumers and businesses continue on the road to economic recovery, digital payment and in particular frictionless e-commerce experiences, will become a competitive advantage for small businesses.

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About Visa Inc. 

Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) is the world’s leader in digital payments. Our mission is to connect the world through the most innovative, reliable and secure payment network – enabling individuals, businesses and economies to thrive. Our advanced global processing network, VisaNet, provides secure and reliable payments around the world, and is capable of handling more than 65,000 transaction messages a second. The company’s relentless focus on innovation is a catalyst for the rapid growth of connected commerce on any device, and a driving force behind the dream of a cashless future for everyone, everywhere. As the world moves from analog to digital, Visa is applying our brand, products, people, network and scale to reshape the future of commerce. For more information, visit About Visa, https://www.visa.com.ng/ and @VisaAfrica.

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