International Finance

Access Bank deepens financial inclusion with agency banking

The decision will enable branches to focus on complex customer obligations

Access Bank, a Nigerian multinational bank, introduced agency banking to deepen financial inclusions in Nigeria. The new decision will enable the branches to focus more on complex customer obligations.

Agency banking involves a financial institution authorising a third party to process clients’ transactions.

Michael Ogbaa, head, Agency Banking, Access Bank stated that only 167,000 PoS terminals are active out of the 307,000 terminals in Nigeria. There are only 7,000 ATMs in Nigeria, which is grossly inadequate for a nation with over 99 million adult population. The lower number of such provisions makes agency banking a priority.

He elaborated on the issues that agent banks might face which include charges, settlement and reconciliation issues, restrictions in various banking applications and platforms and inadequate PoS terminals.

The group deputy managing director of the bank, Roosevelt Ogbonna said that the new decision was made to include the financially excluded ones. He added that the bank would be working with its partners across the country, who have better knowledge about the market and locality than any other bank. He appreciated the banking agents for the work they have done.

He asked his customers to communicate the problems they might face during the processes and shared his expectation to increase the customer base of the bank through agency banking.

Nigeria’s banking landscape is witnessing a massive change currently. The sector which nearly relied on cash transactions is now driven by mobile payments and artificial intelligence and Access Bank has played a major role in it. Access Bank is on its way to becoming the gateway for the Nigerian banking sector.

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