NIGERIA:BEYONDBRANCHES EXPANDS INTO ONDO STATE FOLLOWING UKTI VISIT
Olabisi Olaniyi (pictured here) is a BeyondBranches’ agent. She operates out of Owo Town, in Ondo State of Nigeria. Olabisi has been recorded as the best financial services agent three months in a row. She says that customers are especially happy with the convenience that she is able to offer them, by enabling airtime top-ups; cable subscriptions payments and cash deposits into bank accounts at her store. Olabisi is also glad that she does not have to keep an inventory of recharge cards, but can top-up amounts as low as N50.00 and as flexibly as N206.00.
BeyondBranches identified Ondo State as a key target for these innovative services in 2013. This was finalised in December 2013, when BeyondBranches visited Dr Olusegun Mimiko – Governor of Ondo State – as part of a delegation of British businesses led by Mr. Peter Carter – the British Deputy High Commissioner in Lagos. The delegation also visited Ekiti and Oyo states.
BeyondBranches Chief Operations Officer in Nigeria – Simon Aderinlola – says: ‘According to the World Bank, there are over 11 million micro, small and medium sized enterprises in Nigeria. We hope to provide valuable mobile-based services to help these businesses become more efficient in their operations. However, we have started by enabling specific and targeted over-the-counter payments for our partner organisations. We have also been running promotions to encourage agents to sign-up and get active from the outset. Our promotions also aim to drive agent transactions and repeat consumer patronage.”
Mr. Carter added: “The SME sector drives 90% of the global economy. It is by far the largest employer in almost every country in the world. However, there are very few companies targeting this sector with digital services in the emerging markets. We are very excited to see British technology firms, such as BeyondBranches International, design and launch innovative mobile-based services in vibrant markets, such as Nigeria.”
Prateek Shrivastava, co-founder of BeyondBranches International said: “Britain provides a fertile ground for technology innovation and is a fantastic base for serving markets globally. We were humbled to be chosen to be part of the business delegation in Nigeria. We are excited to bring BeyondBranches’ Agent Network 3.0 approach - in which we combine providing business tools for micro, small and medium sized enterprises with building access to financial services - to Ondo State.”
BeyondBranches International Limited was founded in London, UK in March 2013 with a mission to build robust, secure, active and engaged agent networks globally. BeyondBranches Nigeria was setup in May 2013 to support the cashless, agency banking and mobile payment initiatives running in that country. BeyondBranches is underpinned by a flexible, secure platform and scalable processes to enable Banks and other organizations to effectively leverage the network to bring services to their customers efficiently. For more information, visit www.beyondbranches.com.
UK Trade and Investment UKTI is a government agency jointly funded by the UK department of Business and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO). Offices can be found in over 100 cites globally with the aim of helping UK companies to trade internationally and also attracting high quality inward investment into the UK. In 2011 Prime Minister David Cameron visited Nigeria and Nigeria signed a joint bilateral agreement with President Goodluck Jonathan to double bilateral trade by 2014. The UKTI Nigeria team continues to work with the public & private sector to ensure this target is achieved.