NMBZ e-transactional Volumes Grow

NMBZ Holding’s transactional volumes on all e-channel platforms massively grew on the back of increased deployment of Point of Sale (POS) machines to address the current cash crunch for its clients.

Speaking at the group’s Annual General meeting on Tuesday, NMBZ CEO Benefit Washaya said they distributed many POS machines to provide convenience to its clients.

“The Bank had continued to deploy more point of sale (POS) machines to address the prevailing cash challenges and provide transactional convenience for its clients. Transactional volumes had increased phenomenally on all the bank’s e-channel platforms. A commensurate increase in digital banking income had been recorded,” he said.

He said that most of the bank’s customers had dismissed a malicious hoax message about the bank circulating on WhatsApp last year but it had triggered panic in some customers.

As a proactive response the bank had launched a social media strategy. The bank now had a presence on Facebook, Twitter, Linked-In and WhatsApp.

It had implemented an integrated call centre system that enabled customers to send queries via Facebook, email, Twitter and the NMB web-site and track resolution of their queries.

Mr Washaya said the operating environment continued to be challenging.

“Dwindling aggregate demand, company closures, retrenchments, nostro and cash challenges are some of the factors putting pressure on borrowing customers.

“There is, however, a big relief brought about by the good 2016/2017 agricultural season, due to good rains and the government’s agricultural interventions in the current season.

“The likely impact of this will be improved inflows from tobacco and less pressure on grain imports,” he said.

He said that, cognisant of the tough operating environment, the bank continued to pursue a controlled growth path, bearing in mind the emerging risks.

“Our focus is on cost effective ways to deliver banking products to our customers in ways that ensure sustainability for both our customers and the bank,” he said.

He said operating expenses for the four months to April 30 had increased by two percent, due to a once-off staff rationalisation cost, without which costs would have gone down by two percent.

Through leveraging on its strong shareholder base, NMB Bank had secured a syndicated $15 million credit line from two European development financial institutions which was available for draw down by exporting customers.

“In addition on 17 May 2017 a regional finance house approved a five million dollars line of credit for us and the line will shortly be available for draw down by productive sector clients, including SMEs (small to medium-sized enterprises),” he said.

He added that there was $40 million available to exporters that was still to be drawn down.

Mr Washaya said the operating environment continued to be challenging.

“Dwindling aggregate demand, company closures, retrenchments, nostro and cash challenges are some of the factors putting pressure on borrowing customers.

“There is, however, a big relief brought about by the good 2016/2017 agricultural season, due to good rains and the government’s agricultural interventions in the current season.

“The likely impact of this will be improved inflows from tobacco and less pressure on grain imports,” he said.

He said that, cognisant of the tough operating environment, the bank continued to pursue a controlled growth path, bearing in mind the emerging risks.

“Our focus is on cost effective ways to deliver banking products to our customers in ways that ensure sustainability for both our customers and the bank,” he said.

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