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Fintech capable of boosting FDI inflow, says expert

By Helen Oji
14 February 2022   |   3:35 am
A financial technology (fintech) expert and Managing Director of Stellas Digital Bank, Bukola Solomon, has stated that the industry is capable of attracting huge foreign direct investment ....

A financial technology (fintech) expert and Managing Director of Stellas Digital Bank, Bukola Solomon, has stated that the industry is capable of attracting huge foreign direct investment (FDI) into the country if government creates an enabling environment.

Speaking at the launch of ‘Ghost Mode’, a new app designed by the digital bank, Solomon said providing an enabling environment for fintech would make the industry more competitive and expand to other markets.

He said it would also encourage them to come up with technical innovative products that could help solve problems in the financial industry and boost financial inclusion.

“Fintechs generally are on the rise, the world knows that technology is the next oil money. We have seen that foreigners are already positioning themselves to be able to harness that opportunity; we also find out that even the foreigners are coming to Nigeria to invest in companies that are tech-based because they know that this is the next oil money.

“Unfortunately, Nigeria has not taken a position, we are still stuck in old ways of doing things and that is why Nigerian investors are not seeing the potential. Foreign investors are leaving their country to invest in Nigeria

“If we can improve this industry and develop it, it will be a major source of FDI for Nigeria, if we give the fintech industry room to develop, a lot of foreign investment will come into the industry and the issue of dollar shortage will be a thing of the past,” he said.

He also advocated for a separate regulator for fintech firms that do not have a banking licence to avoid any form of abuse in the industry.

On the new product, Solomon said the emergence of the digital bank is a strategic response to many months of industry and market analyses, which showed that Nigeria’s Fintech space, despite observed growth, still has some niches yet unserved.

The company’s Chief Technology Officer (CTO), Anselem Uba, said the product would revolutionise customer experience and trigger a whole new community of ‘anonymous angels’.

“Beyond this, he said the feature ultimately protects the bank’s customers by encrypting their transactions and isolating them from fraudsters,” he said.

According to Uba, automated deposit, another unique feature, allows users to transfer funds from any bank account into the Stellas app without manually transferring from one bank into the other. This functionality, he said, saves them the rigours of deploying several Apps in order to perform a transaction, thereby creating convenience, speed and efficiency.

“The budgeting tool is a helpful feature released on the Stellas app, enabling users to plan and allocate funds to monthly expenditure similar to how individuals conventionally make a list of how to disburse monthly income.

One of the benefits of the Budgeting tool is the ability to compare their actual spending to the budget real-time and periodically, keeping users in check on spending habits”, the CTO noted.