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Ecobank Offers Back-to-School Loan Packages to Parents

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Ecobank Nigeria

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

The desire to ease the financial burdens of parents and guardians as regards the payment of school fees of their children and wards for the 2021/2022 school year has made Ecobank Nigeria come up with affordable loan packages.

The Head of Consumer Banking at Ecobank Nigeria, Mrs Korede Demola-Adeniyi, explained that the introduction of the credit facility is in line with the lender’s overall strategy to support the development of the nation’s education sector.

A statement from the financial institution disclosed that the loan packages were designed under its back-to-school initiatives and are also available to school owners through special infrastructure loans.

“As a bank that has the interest of its customers at heart especially at this period when schools resume, we understand the importance of education. Children deserve to go to school and we are making it easy for parents to provide them with this basic right,” she said.

Speaking specifically on the loans available for the educational institutions, she noted that they could be accessed without bottlenecks as the bank has taken into cognisance the harsh effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mrs Demola-Adeniyi urged schools to appoint the bank as their preferred financial institution for payments and collections, noting that Ecobank has demonstrated pedigree and expertise in fees collection, locally and internationally.

She further encouraged schools and individuals that are yet to open Ecobank accounts to do so in order to access the offers available.

The banker also said Ecobank’s digital offerings are targeted at reducing the financial burden on parents, students and schools, and also facilitating the ease of payment of fees without hassles.

She listed the digital offerings to include Ecobank Mobile App, EcobankPay and Ecobank Online for contactless fees payment; personal loans and salary advance packages at competitive interest rates, international transfers for offshore school fees payment and affordable remittance offerings.

Mrs Demola-Adeniyi also noted that families abroad who wish to send money home to help with fees can do so at zero charges on the Rapidtransfer app.

The bank has also provided the banking-for-school pack for educational institutions to access working capital and loans. The features of this pack include easy fee collections, zero charges on collection accounts with EcobankPay, secure online banking with Omni Lite and cards for easy payments.

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Fidelity Bank to Develop SMEs Capacity in Non-Oil Exports

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Non-Oil Exports

By Sodeinde Temidayo David

Fidelity Bank Plc is set to promote Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) capacity in the non-oil exports sector in a bid to promote its resolve to help Nigerian businesses build sustainable export capabilities.

This is coming as the leading Nigerian lender is set to host the 11th and 12th editions of its highly acclaimed Export Management Programme (EMP).

The EMP was launched in 2016 and is targeted at preparing participants for real-time experiences in the international non-oil export markets and the broader export market at large.

The session of the event is set to typically cover a wide range of topics including export documentation, selection and implementation of supply chain management for exports, application of export development business processes amongst others.

Speaking on the programme, the Managing Director of Fidelity Bank, Mrs Nneka Onyeali-Ikpe, noted that as a leading supporter of small businesses, the EMP was introduced to bridge the knowledge gap in the export business locally and to help participants to compete effectively in the global export market.

The 11th edition of the EMP is scheduled to hold at the Lagos Business School (LBS), Lekki, Lagos between October 4 and 8, 2021.

Following the success of previous editions and the yearnings of potential participants, the bank has also decided to host an edition of the training in Kano for those who would miss the Lagos session.

Tagged EMP 12, this is set to hold in Kano from October 11 to 15, 2021, at a venue in the state in which the bank has promised will soon be announced.

The sessions would be facilitated by leading faculty from LBS, Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) staff as well as experts in financial management and exports.

Interested participants are expected to register on the bank’s web platform.

According to Mrs Onyeali-Ikpe, the EMP was set up given the immense benefits that the non-oil sector provides to the economy and the nation in terms of providing much needed foreign exchange investments, increasing our Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and employment generation.

She further expressed that the company enjoys hosting the EMP as interested entrepreneurs take advantage of the initiative and take their business to the next level.

Fidelity Bank has over the years demonstrated its resolve to grow the non-oil export side of the economy through strategic initiatives and partnerships.

The bank has also successfully leveraged strategic partnerships with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) under various industry targeted intervention funding programmes.

This is to enhance access to credit for eligible players in the agribusiness and non-oil exports space with the aim of addressing food security gaps and enhancing foreign exchange earnings.

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Banking

Chipper Cash Launches Free P2P Money Transfers in SA

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Chipper Cash SA

By Sodeinde Temidayo David

A fast-growing African financial technology start-up has officially launched Chipper Cash in South Africa, to offer domestic free peer-to-peer (P2P) money transfers.

With this, Chipper Cash will enable South Africans to enjoy free unlimited instant domestic money transfers, invest in cryptocurrencies, and buy and send airtime and data to loved ones.

Also coming with it, instant cross-border payments can be made from South Africa, joining other African countries such as Nigeria, Ghana, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, and Kenya.

This is coming after the company secured $100 million which was set to enlarge its expansion, as it plans to introduce more products and grow its team.

Founded in 2018 by Mr Messrs Ham Serunjogi and Mr Maijid Moujaled, the Chipper Cash app was created with the aim of making money transfers easy and efficient for Africans.

It also aims to increase access to financial services for the underbanked as well as digitise daily payments to ease the reliance on cash.

Speaking on the expansion, Chipper Vice President of Strategy and Partnerships in Africa, Pardon Mujakachi, noted that domestic remittances are a lifeline for many families in South Africa and Chipper’s mission is to make the process more seamless and cost-effective for them.

With the introduction of Chipper Cash to the South African economy, people can instantly purchase airtime and data from leading South African network providers to send to friends and family.

Following this, a record had proven that as of 2019, South Africa had around 11 million unbanked people.

This left many people seeking alternative options for domestic remittances, which serves as a lifeline to the 24 million South Africans who send money to family and friends daily.

Adding to this, there are also 7.7 million people who moved to other provinces for work, resulting in over R157 billion, an estimated N4 trillion being moved across provinces annually.

Chipper Cash’s speed, very low cost and user-friendliness are set to challenge the high fees, complicated processes, and slow transfer times of traditional money transfer.

This is seen as its interface is intuitive, simple and makes sending money to friends and family as simple and instant as sending a text.

The company is still set to improve the making cross-border money transfers easy and affordable for Africans, as it currently has about 4 million users on its platform and has averaged 80,000 daily transactions with a value of $100 million in payments.

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Banking

We’ll Continue to Drive Inclusive Growth in Africa—Standard Chartered

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Standard Chartered Drive Inclusive Growth

By Dipo Olowookere

Standard Chartered Bank has reaffirmed its determination to continue to use its experience in the international financial markets to drive inclusive growth and development in Africa.

Recently, the lender, alongside three other banks, acted as joint lead manager for Access Bank Plc on its $500 million senior Eurobond issuance.

The 5-year unsecured note (144A/RegS) under Access Bank’s $1.5 billion Global Medium-Term Note Programme was issued with a yield and coupon of 6.125 per cent with interest payable semi-annually in arrears.

Commenting on the exercise, the Executive Director in charge of Corporate, Commercial and Institutional Banking at Standard Chartered Nigeria & West Africa, Mr Olukorede Adenowo, noted that, “Standard Chartered is proud to partner with Access Bank on this momentous transaction.”

“The success of this issuance demonstrates investors’ confidence in Access’s strategy as a leading banking group out of Africa.

“We continue to work with our clients across Africa to deliver on their growth aspirations and also use our market-leading position in the international bond markets and sustainable financing space to drive inclusive growth and development in Africa,” he stated.

The bond, which matures in September 2026, is listed on the main market of the London Stock Exchange (LSE) and would be used for medium-term funding and help to enhance the capacity of the bank to support its general banking purposes.

The offering achieved the lowest (outstanding) Nigerian bank Eurobond coupon, supported by an over 3 times oversubscribed order book of over $1.6 billion, which represents the largest order book ever for a Nigerian bank Eurobond transaction.

The transaction saw significant demand from top-quality investors globally including the United States, Europe, the United Kingdom, Middle East, Asia and Africa, anchored by a number of large tickets.

The phenomenal success of this transaction is a strong testament to global investors’ confidence in Access Bank as well as Standard Chartered’s deep knowledge of the banking and financial markets industry, access to diverse global and local investor pool and strong relationships with the key stakeholders.

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