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Access Holdings to leverage tech for improved payments settlement

By Helen Oji
02 December 2022   |   2:19 am
Access Holdings Plc has assured shareholders that the bank has created a robust compliance process and technology platform that would help mitigate operational risk that may arise in its pursuit of becoming the largest payment settlement firm in Africa..

Wigwe

Access Holdings Plc has assured shareholders that the bank has created a robust compliance process and technology platform that would help mitigate operational risk that may arise in its pursuit of becoming the largest payment settlement firm in Africa, third in the world.

At the bank’s statutory meeting with its shareholders held in Lagos on Tuesday, the Group Managing Director of the Corporation, Herbert Wigwe, noted that the Holding company, in its efforts to become Africa’s gateway to the world may be susceptible to some operational risks that follow such massive investments.

However, he allayed the fears of the shareholders in this regard, noting that the businesses would generate commissions and fees but would not lead to any significant credit risk.

According to him, the bank has completed an arrangement to roll out Hydrogen Payment Services Company, a state-of-the-art technology infrastructure that would offer reliable, easy and low-cost payments services to persons and businesses.

“We share the fact that we wanted to be known as Africa’s gateway to the world. What that means is that we are going to be responsible for payments across the entire continent, irrespective of where you are and from where you are transferring money. We are going to support intra-African trade, which is a big problem today.

“The bank cannot do this alone because these are very specialised skills and it will allow for seamless settlements, even in countries where we do not have a physical presence. The idea is that wherever you are in the world, if you are making a transfer to anybody across the continent, one out of every three transactions that come into the continent will be settled on Access Bank’s platform,” Wigwe said.

Furthermore, the GMD said plans are underway for the establishment of more subsidiaries, among which are insurance brokerage, lending platform targeted at youths, among others.

He assured the shareholders that the corporation is doing everything within its powers to increase its earnings and spread its tentacles across the continent.

“We will continue to spread across Europe to make sure that at the end of the day, perhaps ten years from now, we would have created a very strong diversified entity, not just relying on Nigeria or Africa but having a broad diversified income base with good quality earnings coming from countries where the inflation rates are less than that of the country, therefore making us much more stronger franchise than any other financial institution in the continent,” he said.

Meanwhile, shareholders at the meeting unanimously adopted the statutory report of the Holding company in compliance with the provisions of Section 235 of the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA).

The Founder of the Independence Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), Sir Sunny Nwosu expressed satisfaction with the state of affairs in the bank especially for abiding by strict corporate governance principles and sustaining its profitability.

He, however, advised that the bank should put its operating cost on check to enable it consolidate on the performance and sustain its dividend policy.