Wednesday, November 14, 2012
…GMD dedicates award to customers
FirstBank, Nigeria’s leading financial institution on Wednesday received a “Milestone Achievement Award” for hitting 5 million Verve card issuance mark on the Interswitch network.
The Bank which got the milestone award for the feat from Interswitch at a short ceremony held at its head office in Lagos , achieved this through a steady growth from 1.9 million to 5 million Verve cards in one year.
According to Mr. Mitchell Elegbe, group managing director of Interswitch, the Bank also increased the activity rate of its cards, (i.e. number of active cards) on the Interswitch network from 56 per cent to 90 per cent in 12 months.
“To put this in proper perspective, 90% of FirstBank Verve cards are active and have carried out at least 1 transaction in the last 2 months. The average rate across the switch is about 70%. These are huge milestones which deserves recognition and commendation,” he said.
Making reference to his observation of the Bank’s performance about 12 months ago, he said, ‘First Bank has put together a formidable e-Business team. The performance of the bank in the last 12 months shows that First bank has indeed put together one of the most formidable teams in the industry today.”
Elegbe congratulated the Group Managing Director of First Bank for the vision and leadership, to make the success story a reality.
“Congratulations must also go to the E-Business team of first bank for a fantastic job well done. We will continue to innovate with FirstBank to ensure that it achieves and exceeds its strategic visions in the area of e-business,” he added.
The Group Managing Director of the Bank, Mr. Bisi Onasanya in his response, dedicated the award to the bank’s numerous customers, noting that their patronage and loyalty had continued to drive the Bank along the path of innovation, service excellence, and profitability.
Onasanya said the award would encourage the customers to remain loyal to the bank, and promised that the bank would continue to provide superior services. He said the Bank would continue to defend and extend its leadership of the financial services sector through technology-driven service and specialized products and services that speak to all sections of the banking public.
“FirstBank’s investment in e-business reflects our commitment to promoting financial inclusion which is widely regarded as a panacea for ensuring sustainable economic growth and development as well as enhancing entrepreneurship. Our passion to serve and extend financial services to the unbanked and under-banked has since inspired several innovations including the introduction of a card-less Automated Teller Machine (ATM) Transfer service which ensures that people without bank accounts or electronic cards can receive funds from our ATMs across the nation,” he added.
The challenges and opportunities of the future are even greater than the ones so far experienced. With only 25million cards issued in Nigeria today for a population of over 160million, with less that 1% of payments for goods and services still being done with cards at merchant locations across the country today and with the unbanked still not included in the sphere of financial services, there remains significant opportunity for even more spectacular growth.