• Wednesday, June 19, 2024
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Stakeholders expect ATMS to serve as bank branches as lenders step up digitization

Stakeholders expect ATMS to serve as bank branches as lenders step up digitization

Automated Teller Machine ( ATM) must evolve amid rapid changes in the economy and rise of digital payment alternatives to meet the evolving needs of current and future customers, according to stakeholders from Nigeria’s financial industry.

Recognizing that ATM will continue to play a complementary role in the banking and payments channel mix in Nigeria,  the industry players said there is need to roll out additional ATMS to meet the current shortfall and build capacity for the large unbanked population being onboarded via the numerous financial inclusions initiatives.

The industry players made this known at a recent virtual conference organized by Fintech1000+ in its webinar series with the theme: ‘What Future for ATMs in Nigeria-Death Resurgence.’

According to Tope Dare, Executive Director, Infrastructure Business at Inlaks banks in Nigeria are investing heavily on ATM not just for it to be used for cash withdrawals but deposits.

“There is a bank that’s using that to drive their business in the north,” Dare said, adding that “what we also see is transitions to cashless transactions where the ATM will become the point of customer engagement for digital product and service the banks can deliver.”

Bob Nwojo, the Group Head, Acceptance Business at First Bank is optimistic that in the nearest future, more bank customers will start using non-card ways of doing a transaction at the ATM; “they will be using USSD, and QR code to make transactions at ATMS.”

Meanwhile, CBN’S 2012 and 2018 CBN Financial Inclusion Strategy Documents set 93,000 ATM target for the year 2020. However, the 24% achievement (over 70,000 shortfalls) confirms the urgent need for closer collaboration between CBN and related stakeholders for a detailed review and timely execution of related policies for the resurgence of the channel.

“Yes, we need more ATM because the ones we have is not enough and yes, we can make the ones we already have to be more efficient, “Akeem Lawal, Divisional Chief Executive Officer at Interswitch Group said.

But to set up an ATM that won’t record failed transactions Lawal said: “It means you will have to put power in place, get clean currency notes, manage logistics and this is only possible with the right investment to solve the problems.”