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The Struggling Entrepreneur: How I Got International Customers To Buy My Products With Ease — Okon Achibong

Gbemileke Ajayi

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Innovation is the new competitive edge for every business. 6 months ago, my business was at a critical phase; we were expanding. Our products had caught the eye of the international market and buyers across the world were indicating interest. Whilst this new wave of interest was long overdue, I was scared that the negative perception of Nigeria in some quarters in the international market would affect my business. My fear was not without reason, we had lost a lot of sales in the past due to this issue.

So, this time I was taking steps to ensure that the interests crystalized into sales. I engaged a PR firm in hopes that their branding efforts would help allay the fears of international buyers and drive them to patronize my business. A few months later, the branding efforts started bearing fruits.

3 months after we engaged the PR firm, we received international orders from 15 customers with 3 making full payments for their orders. This was a new dawn as I could sense better days ahead. But then an issue arose…. the remaining 12 customers were making little orders and had insisted on making payments with their credit cards due to the cost of traditional payment methods. This was a big issue because our website through which orders came in did not have a payment functionality. We had tried getting a solution a year ago but the cost of acquiring such a solution was on the high side and we had to jettison the idea. This request kept me up late at night as I wondered if this was going to be another case of poor sales. Where do I even get such a solution from within 48 hours?

The next morning, I gathered my accounts team and charged them with the responsibility of looking for a solution before the close of business. As fate would have it, one of my staff in his search stumbled on an advert online about a solution called Global Pay. Immediately, he reached out to me and we called the bank. A gentleman picked up and after exchanging pleasantries we told him of our plight and the solution we had seen.

In few words, he explained that with GlobalPaywe could receive payments from anywhere in the world with debit or credit cards.  A bit sceptical, we applied for it and the solution was set up on our website in less than 24 hours. We reached out to the remaining 12 customers advising them to visit our website to make payment. 20 minutes later, we received feedback on how seamless the payment process was much to my surprise. My accounts team reconfirmed the payments from the payment notifications and the online monitoring log and all payments were received. We dispatched their orders afterwards.

GlobalPay is not just a payment solution, it is a business saver that has eliminated major payment hassles for my business.

BUSINESS

5 Tips To Keep Your Account Safe And Checkmate Attempts Of Fraudsters On Your Account’ [VIDEO]

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Senate Orders CBN To Suspend ATM Card Maintenance Charges, ATM’s To Dispense N40,000

Gbemileke Ajayi

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The Senate has urged the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to look into the suspension of the Automated Teller Machine (ATM) maintenance and withdrawal charges by banks.

This was after a motion on “illicit and excessive charges by Nigerian banks in customers’ accounts” was raised by Senator Gbenga Ashafa during the plenary session on Wednesday.

Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu seconded the motion, saying: “The ATM charge is not the only charge we get from the bank, there are VAT charges and so on; this is unacceptable. We have the Customer Protection Agency in Nigeria, but they are not living up to expectations.”

The issue generated much debate on the floor of the Senate and after much deliberations, a few resolutions were made.

The Senate directed the committees on banking insurance and other financial institutions and finance to conduct an investigation into the propriety of ATM card maintenance charges in comparison with international best practices and report back to the Senate.

It also mandated the committees on banking, insurance and other financial institutions and finance to invite the CBN Governor to appear before the body in order to explain why the official charges as approved by the CBN are skewed in favour of the banking institutions as against the ordinary customers of the banks.

The lawmakers urged CBN to suspend the ATM card maintenance charges being deducted from customers accounts, just as they called on the CBN to instruct the commercial banks to configure their machines to extend to N40,000 per withdrawal, pending the outcome of the investigation by the committees.

The Consumer Protection Council was called upon to be up and doing in taking up the plight of ordinary Nigerians by looking into the various complaints of excess and unnecessary charges by Nigerian banks.

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Reasons To Bank With Zenith Bank [VIDEO]

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