By Juliet Umeh
As Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN continues its vision to achieve financial inclusion by recently announcing two telecommunications service providers, MTN’s Momo PSB and Airtel’s SmartCash PSB.
The two joined 9PSB, the payments subsidiary of telecom firm 9Mobile, as payment service banks.
However, in an effort to find out how PSB will cope with the competition since it is seen as the forerunner in the business of payment service bank, the company says it does not intend to cope as it is not in competition with anyone.
Head Marketing Communications and Customer Experience, 9PSB, Mr. Olushola Ogunyemi, said: “We welcome all of them and indeed, we look forward to collaborating with some of them because we believe collaboration will help to foster the results that everybody who is truly interested in financial inclusion is looking for.
“We are the forerunners in this industry. In a way, we have charted a path for the payment bank industry in this country through the last mile financial inclusion.
“While we are doing that, all competition is welcome. It’s a huge country; we have over 200 million people. We believe that at the end of the day, all competition will end up favouring the end beneficiaries.
“So, we don’t want to fall into the trap that it’s all about competition and everybody is trying to lay claims to be the biggest and widest and in the process, the end users suffer.
“We are focused on what we are doing through last mile delivery, and it is a passion point for us; it is a social objective.”
Recall that MTN Nigeria’s CEO, Karl Toriola, while reacting to his company’s award of the PSB license, said the development was an important milestone for the Telco in its mission to support the government’s drive towards financial inclusion in Nigeria especially to the people in rural and remote areas who are excluded from the financial system.
Similarly, Airtel Africa’s chief, Segun Ogunsanya, saw the development as the beginning of the telco’s journey to revolutionise the financial services landscape in the country. He said: “The move is “to help further digitise the economy, and most importantly to help bank the unbanked by reaching the millions of Nigerians who do not currently have access to financial services by delivering current and savings accounts, payment and remittance services, debit and prepayment cards and more sophisticated services.”