Telecommunications giant, MTN Ghana has announced that 18.5 million volumes of transactions are recorded through its MTN Mobile Money in a month, as against more than five million in 2014.
Out of that figure (18.5 million), over 4.8 million are registered on the service this year -2015, while over two million were registered on the service last year. These came to light at the launch of MTN Mobile Money Month in Accra. These figures, the publication learnt, are higher than the monthly transactions of some of the commercial banks operating in the country.
Some industry watchers say that the growth of mobile money services threatens microfinance firms and the banks as well. However, the Senior Commercial Manager of Sales and Distribution at MTN Ghana, Eli Hini argued: "The growth of Mobile Money rather complements the business of microfinance/banks because it provides tools/solutions to enhance their offerings/services.
"Customers are now able to receive their loan disbursements into their Mobile Money wallets wherever they are and are able to make loan repayments without visiting the branch", he added.
Speaking at the launch, the General Manager of Capital Project Group at MTN Ghana, William Tettey emphasised that in an effort to bring mobile money services to the doorsteps of subscribers, the mobile operator had had partnered a number of local banks, including Access Bank, Agricultural Development Bank (ADB), Cal Bank, Ecobank, Fidelity, GT Bank, Universal Merchant Bank, Stanbic, UBA and Zenith.
MTN Ghana, which is the largest telecom network, is available across Ghana in all the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) and key villages and towns in the country, so as the mobile money or mobile banking platform. It is available in all the over 77 MTN service centres and 19,500 mobile money merchants doted across the country.
Also, "the service enables MTN Mobile Money customers with the help of partners like Lyca, WorldRemit and Xpress Money and several others to receive money from abroad instantly on their phones. Ghanaians in UK, Australia, Switzerland, Qatar, etc., are able to send money to their relatives and friends via the service", he stated.
MTN Mobile Money users can pay their DSTV and ECG bills and school fees, purchase airline tickets, as well as pay for goods purchased at Melcom Plus, Max Mart and other online shops. For the past four years, MTN Ghana has dedicated the month of August to Mobile Money to create awareness about the service and highlight the importance of creating a cashless economy.
The month-long celebration which is under the theme 'Mobile Money, driving financial inclusion in Ghana' summarises the overall objective of this year's celebration. With MTN Mobile Money, we can deliver financial services at affordable costs to all segments of the Ghanaian society, according to Mr. Tettey.
Outlining the number of activities to mark the month, the Mobile Money Business Development Manager at MTN Ghana, Abdul Majeed mentioned the MTN Mobile Money Stakeholder Workshop, SME Drive, Market/Community Activations, and merchant fora as some of the activities.
In her welcome address, the Senior Manager for MTN Ghana Corporate Communications, Mrs. Georgina Asare Fiagbenu, entreated the customers of MTN and the general public to watch out for the various exciting packages that will be available during the month-long celebration.