The Western Union Company, a leader in global payment services, has announced the launch of the outbound remittance service in Nigeria.
Since the Western Union Money Transfer service was launched in Nigeria in 1995, consumers in the country have only been able to receive funds via the service.
This launch therefore represents a significant milestone as it marks the first time outbound remittance has become available to the Nigerian community who are now able to send funds in minutes via Western Union around the world.
First Bank of Nigeria Limited (FirstBank), Nigeria’s foremost banking institution, has become the first Western Union Agent to offer this service.
The collaboration will enable Western Union consumers (as well as FirstBank’s customers) to enjoy Western Union’s new ‘outbound send’ offering through the bank’s branches.
The launch was commemorated with Godwin Emefiele, governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) performing Nigeria’s first outbound transaction at FirstBank Abuja Main Branch, Central Business District, Abuja.
Also in attendance were Aida Diarra, regional vice president for Africa, Western Union; and Bisi Onasanya, group managing director/chief executive officer, First Bank of Nigeria.
Speaking at the event, Emefiele said “We are delighted that Western Union has taken the lead in providing outbound remittance services to Nigerians. Today’s launch demonstrates the company’s proactive step in taking advantage of the Central Bank of Nigeria’s vision of creating an enabling environment for the emergence of innovative and superior financial products that reduce transaction costs for Nigerians and give them a chance at living better lives.”
Commenting on the launch, Aida Diarra, regional vice president for Africa, Western Union stated, “We are very pleased to announce the launch of the “outbound send” service from Nigeria to destinations around the world. We anticipate that the outbound enabled service offering in Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy, will be instrumental in making positive economic impact in the country by supporting business growth, social development and financial inclusion”
She further stated that “We are at the forefront of innovation in the industry and we believe this service will respond to our new consumer segment needs. We pride ourselves in moving money for better by giving consumers access to a range of quality financial services in a convenient manner. This is further demonstration of our efforts to support the Central Bank of Nigeria’s objectives for financial inclusion.”
Speaking on the launch, Bisi Onasanya, group managing director/ chief executive officer, First Bank of Nigeria Limited stated “Having been the first to offer Western Union Services in the country as far back as 1995, we remain committed to delivering innovative customer solutions and are proud to be the first bank to offer yet another excellent customer focused solution – the Western Union Out Bound Service – to the Nigerian market. As a Brand, we remain committed to putting our customers first”.
The initial launch of the outbound service is currently limited to select FirstBank branches until the service is rolled out to Western Union’s over 5,000 Agent locations nationwide.
Western Union is a leader in continuous innovation in the Nigerian market by being the first to conduct outbound enabled remittance in addition to introducing new and modern services.
Account Based Money Transfer (ABMT) and Mobile Money Transfer (MMT) which enable consumers to receive a Western Union Money Transfer in a bank account and on a mobile money wallet respectively, are an example of such services
Western Union also recently launched www.WesternUnion.ng; the new web site in Nigeria which allows the consumer to go online, log onto the website and direct funds they are about to receive to their personal account with any of the specified banks.
Together with its Vigo, Orlandi Valuta, Pago Facil and Western Union Business Solutions branded payment services, Western Union provides consumers and businesses with fast, reliable and convenient ways to send and receive money around the world, to send payments and to purchase money orders.
As of June 30, 2014, the Western Union, Vigo and Orlandi Valuta branded services were offered through a combined network of nearly 500,000 agent locations in 200 countries and territories and over 100,000 ATMs.
In 2013, The Western Union Company completed 242 million consumer-to-consumer transactions worldwide, moving $82 billion of principal between consumers, and 459 million business payments.
On the other hand, First Bank of Nigeria Limited, a subsidiary of FBN Holdings Plc, is Nigeria’s leading financial services institution by total assets and gross earnings and one of the largest corporate and retail banking financial institutions in sub-Saharan Africa (excluding South Africa).
Since its establishment in 1894, the Bank has consistently built relationships with customers focusing on fundamentals of good corporate governance, strong liquidity, risk management and strong capitalization.
FirstBank operates an extensive distribution network with over 750 business locations, about 2,446 ATM’s and over 10 million customer accounts.
The Bank provides a comprehensive range of financial services and has international presence through its subsidiaries, FBN Bank (UK) Limited in London and Paris, Banque International de Credit (B.I.C) in the Republic of Congo, International Commercial Bank (ICB) in Ghana, The Gambia, Guinea, Sierra-Leone and Senegal as well as its Representative Offices in Johannesburg, Beijing and Abu Dhabi.
Stanbic IBTC Bank Disowns Lagos ATM Fraudster
Stanbic IBTC Bank PLC has disowned Tope Olajide, 22-year-old fraudster arraigned for theft of customers deposits.
The Bank said this in a statement on Wednesday.
The statement said: “The attention of the management of Stanbic IBTC Bank PLC has been drawn to news currently circulating in the media, about the alleged arraignment of staff of the Bank on charges bordering on the theft of customers deposits.
“The Bank would like to clarify that the defendant, a 22-year-old Tope Olajide, IS NOT, and was at no point in time an employee of Stanbic IBTC Bank PLC.
“The alleged culprit was apprehended around 7:30 am, on Thursday, 27 August 2020, by security operatives after he was exposed by CCTV footage using ATM cards he had allegedly stolen and converted, to make withdrawals from the accounts tied to the stolen ATMs.
“The CCTV footage also showed the alleged culprit pretending to assist customers at ATMs whilst also attempting to fraudulently dispossess the customers of their ATMs.
“He was subsequently arraigned before an Ikeja Magistrate Court on Monday, 14 September, for stealing the debit cards of two customers and using them to unlawfully withdraw the sum of N427,000.
“The Bank would also like to implore members of the public to be security conscious when conducting transactions at ATMs. Customers are advised to report any suspicious actions around them to security operatives who are usually stationed around the Bank’s ATMs, when carrying out transactions at any of our ATM locations.
“As an organisation, we hold dear the values of integrity, and we will continue to prioritise the safety of our customers effectively.”
Buhari Okays Establishment of CBN-Led Infraco
President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the establishment of an Infrastructure Company (Infraco) to be driven by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in partnership with the African Finance Corporation (AFC) and the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA).
This is coming on the heels of the foreign reserves’ slump to $36 billion following a cocktail of monetary policy interventions by the apex bank to cushion the scathing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economy.
Mr Godwin Emefiele, CBN governor, made these disclosures in Abuja at the annual conference of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) with the theme: Facilitating a Sustainable Future: The role of Banking and Finance.
According to him, Infraco would enable the use of private and public capital to support infrastructure investment that will have a multiplier effect on growth across critical sectors.
“This entity would also be able to raise funds from the capital markets and mobilise long term finance to address some of our infrastructure needs, while providing reasonable returns to investors. “We believe this well-structured fund can act as a catalyst for growth in the medium and the long run. The support of the banking community will be important in achieving this objective.
“A well-built infrastructure system, comprising hard infrastructure such as roads and ports, and soft infrastructure such as broadband penetration, can have a multiplier effect on growth by enabling the expansion of business activities in the country”, he explained.
On foreign reserves, Emefiele attributed its crash to the decline in foreign exchange earnings and subsequent adjustments in the value of the naira to the dollar.
Amana Bank signs Comprehensive Software Deal with Path Solutions
Amana Bank, a leading Islamic bank in Somalia has announced that it has selected iMAL, the AAOIFI-certified core banking platform from Path Solutions to replace its legacy IT system and deploy a single, cloud-based digital banking platform to underpin its banking operations.
This is Path Solutions’ third win in Somalia after Premier Bank and MyBank Ltd. The company went through a lengthy competitive bidding to which all international suppliers were invited, before being selected as Amana Bank’s preferred technology partner.
According to a statement following the signing, Path Solutions will supply and install its flagship Islamic core banking platform iMAL in addition to its comprehensive digital suite at Amana Bank Somalia. The new digital software will provide instant 24/7 service availability with fast, inexpensive, easy and convenient online banking, frictionless payments and transfers, personalization, engagement and retention.
Abdirizak Hussein Malin, Chairman of Amana Bank Somalia commented, “As part of our strategy, Amana Bank has instituted a digital transformation plan that will help us meet the emerging needs of our customers and the increasing demands of innovation.
“Consequently, we required a partner with open and agile technology that will drive powerful change. We have chosen Path Solutions for its ability to deliver vital digital financial solutions at this critical time with its depth of experience supporting Islamic banks in Africa.
“The company has differentiated itself from other vendors in its unique ability to combine core Islamic values with modern digital banking solutions, and to fully comply with Sharia and banking regulations.
“We are confident that the new technology, proven to significantly improve levels of customer fulfilment, will transform our operations by driving incredible efficiency gains while also reducing risk, lowering overall IT costs via higher automation and lower maintenance spending”.
The new iMAL platform leverages artificial intelligence and machine learning to help financial institutions get predictive insights for better data-driven decision making. It will also help strengthen customer loyalty through enhanced security transactions.
“We are delighted to partner with a leading Islamic bank in Somalia on a project that will set a new standard in digital banking for the country. Today, every financial institution has an incredible opportunity to apply advances in cloud computing to redefine every aspect of its business”, said Mohammed Kateeb, Path Solutions’ Group Chairman & CEO.
“Somalia’s Amana Bank is a good example of this transformation to drive innovation forward and ensure much more secure banking experience, enabling customers to enjoy the nuances of non-stop banking with cloud-based services.
The bank will also benefit from the full Islamic coverage which bridges the gap between modern customer requirements and intrinsic Islamic values. Our multi-award winning Islamic core banking platform will support the delivery of innovative digital products that are both Sharia-compliant and specialized for Amana Bank’s retail and corporate customers”.
The new agreement was signed by Amana Bank’s Chairman Abdirizak Hussein Malin and Path Solutions’ Group Chairman & CEO Mohammed Kateeb on Sunday 6 September at Path Solutions’ Dubai office. The implementation will be delivered 100% in the cloud and 100% remotely amidst the COVID-19 lockdown.
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