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Pan-African Financial Institution, United Bank for Africa (UBA) who recently clinched the Euromoney awards as the Best Digital Bank in Africa, is once again asserting itself as a pacesetter, moving in leaps and bounds in unchartered territory. UBA’s chat banker, Leo has launched in pilot mode on WhatsApp and will be fully available to customers by September 1st, 2018

With Leo now on WhatsApp, customers who are lovers of the app will be able to open new accounts, check their balances on the go and carry out basic banking services.

Speaking about the launch of Leo on WhatsApp, Kennedy Uzoka, Group Managing Director, said: “Our customers are at the heart of our business and we as a bank, are never relenting in matching our words with equal action. In today’s fast paced world with demands for quick responses, our aim is to make banking seamless and effortless for our millions of existing and potential customers.”

Also speaking on the launch of Leo on WhatsApp, Group Head of UBA’s Online Banking, Mr Austine Abolusoro, stated ‘United Bank for Africa is a technology-driven institution with vast knowledge in the business that we do and Leo, being a tested dependable and intelligent personality, will replicate on WhatsApp, the success it has experienced on the Facebook Messenger platform. It is a solution that is from the customer’s standpoint, easy to use by anyone regardless of your demography.’ ‘Leo is ready and waiting to help with any form of banking services’ continued Abolusoro.

“WhatsApp has been in existence for over 9 years, reaching more than 1.5 billion people in over 180 countries. The premium private chat platform has assured that there will be no spam messages as the development is to enable businesses serve their customers with useful and helpful information.

Leo who is already present in over 12 African subsidiaries, including Nigeria, and available in three languages, will be fully rolled out to customers on WhatsApp in September 2018 with all its regular features and extended attributes for WhatsApp.

UBA is one of Africa’s leading banks with operations in 20 African countries and in London and New York, with presence in Paris.

Adjudged to be at the forefront of innovation and convenient banking, UBA is one of the first financial services institutions on the continent to deploy Finacle 10x, a new information technology platform that boosts its services and electronic banking channels.

Today, UBA provides banking services to more than 15 million customers globally, through over a thousand touch points and other diverse channels.

BUSINESS

Union Bank Shines At Sustainability, Enterprise And Responsibility Awards (SERAs)

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Union Bank has won the Best Company in Environmental Excellence Award and the peoples choice Award for the Most Outstanding Company in CSR/Sustainability’at the 2018 Sustainability, Enterprise and Responsibility Awards (SERAs). The awards were presented at the SERAS ceremony which took place recently at the MUSON center in Lagos.

Following an extensive vetting process that included an on-site inspection of applicants’ Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and sustainability projects and initiatives, Union Bank was nominated across seven award categories including The SERAs Innovation Prize, Best Company in Education and Best Company in Sustainability Reporting.

Commenting on the two awards received by the Bank, Ogochukwu Ekezie-Ekaidem, Head Corporate Communication, and Marketing at Union Bank said:

Corporate citizenship is a core pillar of our brand and business strategy. We are committed to being a sustainability champion in Nigeria and we are always improving our business operations, social engagement and innovation practices to ensure beyond compliance, we are leading the charge to deliver a sustainable future for Nigeria. We thank the SERAS team and all members of the public who recognise the work we are doing.”

Now in its 12th year, SERAs is an annual project organized by TruContact CSR, which aims to promote and raise awareness about the roles organizations to play with an emphasis on their responsibility towards stakeholders and the social development of Africa. The theme for this year’s edition was ‘Poverty Eradication through sustainability: Turning Challenges into opportunities’.

As part of its Citizenship and Sustainability efforts, Union Bank represents Nigeria on the global financial inclusion working group at the World Economic Forum. The bank is a member of the Business Call to Action (BCtA) group and United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) and has recently published its first UNGC Communication of Progress report.

Union Bank also publishes an annual Citizenship, Sustainability and Innovation report which highlights its strategic approach, initiatives and impact made in these areas within the last year.

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BUSINESS

GTBank Maintains Leading Position As Best Bank In Nigeria; Wins Bank Of The Year, Sierra Leone

Peter Okunoren

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Foremost African financial institution, Guaranty Trust Bank Plc has won the award for “Bank of the year Nigeria” for the second year in a row at The Banker’s Bank of the Year Awards, regarded as the industry standard for excellence within the global banking sector.

Guaranty Trust Bank Sierra Leone Ltd, a subsidiary of Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, was also recognized as the “Bank of the Year Sierra Leone” at the event, which held on November 29, 2018, at the Sheraton Grand London Park Lane, London, United Kingdom.

The Banker, a publication of the Financial Times, is the world’s leading monthly journal of records for the banking Industry, with over 90 years expertise in publishing developments in the banking industry in Africa and on the global scale. The Magazine’s Bank of the Year Awards celebrates leading financial institutions within the global banking sector who are setting new industry standards and driving innovation in financial services and customer experience.

Receiving the award on behalf of the Bank, Segun Agbaje, Managing Director/CEO of GTBank said; “We are honoured to be recognized as the 2018 Bank of the Year in Nigeria and Sierra Leone. These awards serve as further motivation for us as we continue to go beyond traditional banking services by creating innovative digital services that are less about us as bank and more about our customers and how we empower them with everything that they need to better their lives.”

He further stated that “Our vision has always been to create an oasis in the financial services industry that leads, not only in earnings and returns on equity but also in maintaining world-class corporate governance standards and pushing the bounds in service delivery and customer experience. These awards reflect our sustained commitment towards this vision, which we will continue to pursue, driven by our passion for excellence and guided by our founding values of hard work, discipline, and integrity.”

Alongside its record for consistent year-on-year growth, GTBank is widely regarded by industry watchers as a trailblazer in the banking industry due to its many innovations in digital and financial services.

Recently, the Bank launched Habari, Nigeria’s largest platform for music, shopping and lifestyle content and the first mobile platform created by a financial institution in the country that focuses on enabling people’s needs and lifestyle rather than providing regular banking products.

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BUSINESS

GTBank Launches “Habari”, Nigeria’s Largest Online Platform For Music, Shopping, Lifestyle Content and More

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Leading African financial institution, Guaranty Trust Bank plc has announced the launch of Habari, Nigeria’s largest platform for music, shopping, lifestyle content and more.

Unveiled on Friday, November 23, 2018, at a special event attended by renowned personalities in the entertainment, media and technology sectors, Habari offers users direct access to the largest catalogue of local and foreign music online, a seamless shopping experience and an exciting way to connect with friends, amongst other features.

Built around the everyday lives of customers, Habari is the first mobile platform in Nigeria created by a financial institution that focuses on enabling people’s needs and lifestyles rather than providing a limited bouquet of regular banking products.

The mobile application is open and free for all to download, does not require mobile banking details and offers a wide range of services, all of which are accessible to anyone regardless of where they choose to bank.

Habari is also very simple to use and is designed with a clean user interface as well as a seamless navigation experience that ensures everything, from the music to listen to, to the bills to pay, are just two clicks away.

Among the exciting services available on Habari are its catalog of local and foreign music, the largest ever in Nigeria, carefully curated videos that range from short engaging self-help kits to captivating full-length movies, and books that cut across all literary genres.

Habari also offers an end-to-end shopping experience that allows users to buy goods and services directly from over 10,000 small businesses.

On Habari users can also shake their phones to find and connect with friends, split bills, transfer and receive funds as well as pay for utilities, subscriptions, and other services.

Commenting on the launch of Habari, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Guaranty Trust Bank plc, Mr Segun Agbaje, said; “By reimagining the role of banking and driving innovation in how we serve customers, we have built a platform that is less about us as bank and more about our customers and everything they need to enable their lifestyle.”

He further stated that “Habari is not a mobile banking application; it is the start of our journey towards building a platform that connects our customers to everything that they need, and which continues to evolve with their lifestyle. We are excited about this journey and we are confident that our customers will see in Habari a simple, smart and exciting digital experience that adds value to their lives, every day.”

GTBank has consistently played a leading role in Africa’s banking industry.

The GTBank brand is regarded by industry watchers as one of the best run financial institutions across its subsidiary countries and serves as a role model within the financial service industry due to its bias for world-class corporate governance standards, excellent service, quality, and innovation.

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