By Peter Egwuatu
First City Monument Bank (FCMB) has said that its business priority in the current financial year is to increase revenue while leveraging on technology. The 33 year old financial institution which is playing vigorously in the sector’s retail space also stated that its key part of business direction is to reduce cost to income ratio, while focusing on taking its core customer promises of being helpful, reliable and customer focused to a new industry benchmark.
Defining key challenges to achieving the feat as including the changing business environment and regulatory pressures, the Assistant Vice President and Group Head Information Technology at First City Monument Bank (FCMB), Mr. Emeka Eboegbune, while responding to a media inquiry in Lagos said that the technology landscape in Nigerian banks is trending towards providing convenient products and services to customers on mobile devices while utilising cloud technologies for more reliable services.
Eboegbune opined that a key game changer for banks is their ability to utilize social media to reach a growing and diverse online population, the banked and unbanked. He described some of the technology challenges faced by financial institutions in Nigeria to include lack of availability of reliable network infrastructure across the country, security of the Banks’ infrastructure as well as reliable power supply.
“Our present focus is the upgrade we have achieved in our core banking and other business applications to the latest available versions to meet and exceed customer demands and expectations, including a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system, Eboegbune stated.
The bank recently unveiled a refreshed corporate identity, followed by the launch of its “world of opportunities” thematic campaign. It highlighted the values of FCMB as a Bank that helps to identify, connect and harness opportunities unique to each individual, social class and other segments of the society.
The financial institution was said to have adopted a technology strategy that is aimed at consolidating FCMB’s focus as a technology driven-bank where banking services are very easy to use, seamless and accessible to all segments of the society. In other words “For our customers, we want banking to be so simple and fun to do. Our investments are channelled in this direction” the Group Head of IT at FCMB stated.
As to what new and innovative services and products the market should be expecting from FCMB, it was disclosed that the Bank is channelling its energy towards simplified banking services and products. It is recalled that recent research reports have unanimously identified FCMB as offering, among a few other banks, the best of social and alternate channels banking services in Nigeria, with some mobile apps for services that are second to none.
FCMB is one of the few banks in Nigeria today practising instant Visa card issuance and the financial institution has also been issuing its Verve and Mastercard products for a while with instant account opening via various channels, mobile, web etc.