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Bank customers with BVN rise to 31.4m In 2017- NIBSS

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The Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System Plc (NIBSS) said bank customers issued Biometric Verification Number (BVN) increased to 31.4 million as at December 31, 2017. Precisely, a total of 31,426,091 were issued BVN last year. As at September 10, 2017 a total number of 30.26 million bank customers were issued BVN as against 29.4 million issued as at June 18, 2017. Early January 2015, a total of about 2.24 million were issued BVN, a year the apex bank commenced the exercise. As at June 7, 2015, the collaborative efforts in the implementation of the BVN initiative had resulted in the achievement of over 12.43 million registered customers in the central database. Analysts maintained that the current figure might increase further this year as a result of the recent extension of Other Financial Institutions (OFIs) registration by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). The CBN in collaboration with banks carried out various sensitization exercises which had been assisting in driving the stakeholders support for the project. The enrollment is still ongoing at about 5,000 banks locations across the country. In a move to fast-track OFI registration, the CBN last month placed all accounts without BVN on a ‘post no debit’ status. The OFIs operators are those in Micro Finance Banks (MFBs), Primary Mortgage Institutions, Development Finance Institutions (DFIs), Discount House, Bureaux-de-change, among others. The CBN in a circular signed by director, OFI supervision department, Mr. Adedeji Adesemoye, said credit lodgments inclusive of deposits and inward transfers, maybe received into such accounts. He directed those in the OFIs operators to continue to enroll customers of such accounts and remove the suspension once they comply. According to the signed circular, “following the expiration of the extended deadline of December 31, 2017 from your customers to enroll and/or submit their BVN details to your institutions, you are required to place all accounts without BVN on a ‘post no debit’ status. “However, credit lodgments inclusive of deposits and inward transfers, maybe received into such accounts. Your are required to continue to enroll customers of such accounts and only remove the ‘post no debit’ restriction when a valid BVN has been obtained and submitted by the customer or the customer has been duly enrolled by your institution.. “Our earlier directive on the conspicuous display of notices sensitizing customers n BVN in the banking hall. He reiterated that the apex bank will continue to monitor compliance and sanction may be impose on non-compliance. Please note that this directive takes effect immediately and the CBN will continue to monitor compliance. Non-compliance will be met with appropriate sanctions,” the circular signed by he added.

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BUSINESS

Fidelity Bank launches new Savings campaign, unveils a Novel Account opening initiative

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Nigerian lender, Fidelity Bank Plc on Monday unveiled a novel account opening initiative, just as it launched a new savings promotion campaign aimed at rewarding new and existing customers of the bank. The new account opening initiative, the first of its kind in the Nigerian banking industry, enables members of the public to open online savings accounts through a Quick Response (QR) code which can be scanned from any of the promotional materials such as roll up banners, fliers, posters and newspaper adverts.

This is expected to significantly ease the process of enrollment of new accounts and deepen the penetration of the new savings promo tagged; Get Alert in Millions Season 3 explained Executive Director, Shared Services and Products, Fidelity Bank, Mrs. Chijioke Ugochukwu, during the launch ceremony at the bank’s corporate Head Office in Lagos Monday. “This new savings promo is the 8th in 11 years. As with the previous ones, we are motivated to continue to empower our customers by rewarding them with cash and gift items, whilst at the same time promoting the savings culture, in line with the financial inclusion drive of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)” said Mrs. Ugochukwu, who doubles as the Chairperson of the Promo Committee. 

Speaking shortly before formally flagging off the promo, Fidelity Bank CEO, Mr. Nnamdi Okonkwo thanked customers, stating that the bank is motivated to continue to incentivize them for their patronage. He said it was imperative to acknowledge the contributions of customers to the growing fortunes of the bank. “Last week, we joined other institutions across the world to observe the 2018 Customer Service Week and I want to use this opportunity to again thank all our customers. Our impressive half year results attest to your support and with your continued patronage, we are on course to delivering on our financial targets for the year” he said.

As a customer-centric bank, Mr. Okonkwo said Fidelity Bank would continue to leverage technology, in line with its digital retail strategy, to better serve customers, through innovative products, services and solutions. He reeled our some of the products to include the newly upgraded Fidelity Online Banking, *770# Instant Banking and Flashkey.“Our online banking solution enables you to transfer foreign exchange seamlessly just as we are the first bank to introduce a chat banking solution that is known as Flashkey. This solution enables you to effect monetary transfers whilst on any social media platform, without recourse to the online banking platform installed on your mobile device” he stated. 

GAIM Season 3, as the new savings promo is called, is expected to run for 9 months till June 2019. The bank, within this period will give out over N120 million in cash and consolation prizes, including weekly airtime rewards. 

To participate, Head, Retail Banking, Fidelity Bank, Mr. Richard Madiebo said “customers can open a savings account and grow it to N20, 000 or top up an existing account with N10, 000 or more to qualify for the monthly draws to win N1million or N2 million. To qualify for the star prize of N3m, he explained that customers are expected to grow their account balances by N50, 000 monthly whilst accounts that maintain a minimum of N200,000 qualify for the grand prize of a whooping N10 million. “As a bank with branches across the country, the draws ceremonies will be done to ensure that everybody, irrespective of where their accounts are domiciled, stand equal chances of winning” he explained. There will be a total of six draws to produce 77 cash and 108 consolation prize winners over the duration of the exercise.

The launch ceremony had in attendance the press, regulatory bodies and some winners from previous savings promotion campaigns. Alhaji GaffarAbdullateef; a previous winner thanked Fidelity Bank for the N3m he won in the last promo, saying that it “significantly gave boost to his business”.  Assistant Director, National Lotteries Regulatory Commission, Joy Okuna, praised Fidelity Bank for the transparency displayed in the last promos.  “As regulators, our duty is to ensure that promos are conducted transparently and I must attest to the high degree of transparency that we see with all Fidelity Bank savings campaigns and we expect no less from this” she stated.

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Forex: Wholesale segment, others get $210m boost

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Authorized dealers in the wholesale segment of the inter-bank foreign exchange market received the sum of $100million from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Tuesday, October 9, 2018 to meet the needs of customers.

The CBN also on Tuesday allocated the sum of $55million each to the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and the invisibles segments. The figure for the invisibles  was meant for customers requiring it for tuition fees, medical payments and Basic Travel Allowance (BTA) amongst others.

The Director, Corporate Communications at the Bank, Isaac Okorafor, reiterated that the Bank’s continued intervention in the inter-bank sector was aimed mainly at ensuring adequate liquidity in the market, even as he noted that there was not much pressure on the naira.

Meanwhile, the naira maintained its steady rate against major currencies around the globe, exchanging for N361/$1 in the BDC segment of the market on Tuesday, October 9, 2018.

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FirstBank promotes financial inclusion, launches XploreFirst Savings Promo for students

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In alignment with its financial inclusion drive, First Bank of Nigeria Limited has announced a promotional campaign aimed at rewarding its youth segment customers for using their FirstBank XploreFirst Savings accounts whilst also encouraging healthy savings habit. The promo which kicked off on October 1, 2018 is scheduled to run for 6 months to March 30, 2019.

XploreFirst is a FirstBank savings account variant designed specifically for students between the age range of 18 – 29 years. A minimum amount of N1, 000 is required to open the account and account holders are to maintain a minimum balance of N200 to run the account.

To participate in the promo, XploreFirst customers are encouraged to save or maintain a minimum amount of N10, 000 in their accounts during the promo period to be eligible for the scholarship raffle draw. Incremental deposits of N10,000 in the account entitles the account holder to multiple tickets for the raffle draw.

A total of 198 winners would emerge from the promo with 18 account holders (3 from each of the six geopolitical zones) being rewarded with scholarships of N150, 000 in a grand finale raffle draw and N5,000 airtime as consolation prizes to 180 account holders (5 from each of the six geopolitical zones).

According to the Group Head, Products & Marketing Support, Mr. Abiodun Famuyiwa, “FirstBank recognises the impact of a healthy savings culture in promoting financial inclusion amongst individuals, especially the youth. And with the saying, the youth are the leaders of tomorrow, we believe that with XploreFirst account, the youths are well positioned to take the lead in their financial activities through the exciting benefits the account offers.
So, if you are a student between the ages of 18 – 29 years, take a walk into any FirstBank branch near you to open an XploreFirst account. Start your journey to financial freedom today with Firstbank”.

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