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IFIS secures CBN’s approval, crosses 10,000 agents’ mark

By Chijioke Nelson
08 December 2017   |   4:25 am
A commercial Super-Agent licence has been granted to Interswitch Financial Inclusion Services (IFIS), a subsidiary of Interswitch Group, by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

Mike Ogbalu,CEO,Interswitch Financial Inclusion Services

A commercial Super-Agent licence has been granted to Interswitch Financial Inclusion Services (IFIS), a subsidiary of Interswitch Group, by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

According to the CBN Regulatory Framework for licensing Super-Agents in Nigeria, the Super-Agent shall be responsible for monitoring and supervising the activities of the agents.

By the approval, IFIS has fulfilled all Approval-in-Principle requirements and now has a business mandate to grow an active agent network of 150,000 by 2020.

Trading as Quickteller Paypoint, IFIS aims to increase the availability of digital financial services in financially-excluded locations in Nigeria from 44 per cent to over 70 per cent in five years.

Meanwhile, Quickteller Paypoint has now crossed a symbolic milestone by breaking the 10,000 activated agent mark and with this feat, it now has the second largest agent network in Nigeria.

Confirming the receipt of the license, the Divisional Chief Executive Officer, IFIS, Mike Ogbalu, said: “With excitement, we are proud to announce this feat. We are conscious of the fact that work is only just starting. We would not be resting on our oars and remain fully dedicated to our cause and business mandate.

“By way of investment in people and technology, we continue to reaffirm our commitment to this ambitious project. We understand the essence of financial inclusion and the impact on national development. With our 10,000 strong agent network, we are well-positioned to serve the nooks and crannies.

“Working closely with governments at various levels and international agencies, IFIS is set to take its services deeper into the rural communities while creating new entrepreneurs and enhancing existing SMEs,” he said.

Ogbalu expressed appreciation to all esteemed agents of the company, valuable partners, stakeholders and the CBN for believing in the vision of the organisation and assured that they will continue to upgrade their systems and security measures in line with developments in the payments industry.

He added that as a licensed super-agent with high sense of responsibility and professionalism, they will continue to abide by the regulatory framework.

Quickteller Paypoint has fully plugged into the Financial Inclusion project in efforts towards building a more inclusive financial ecosystem with new products and partnerships, that are expected to continue to empower its agents and customers alike.

The Quickteller Paypoint promoters said they understand the pain points of the underserved and unbanked Nigerians and is designed to digitise cash and commoditise access to financial services.

Its value proposition cuts across entrepreneurs, artisans, small shop owners, traders, supermarkets, trade associations, retail chains, government agencies and service providers.

The company explained that the technology was premised on shared prosperity, which is an interesting platform for economic growth and in the simplest terms, can be translated to mean “mutual growth”.

Shop owners or existing businesses can earn additional income by adding an array of payment services to their existing bouquet. Commercial and microfinance banks, Telcos, Cable TV providers, Betting companies, Discos, Insurers, Government Agencies etc can deepen penetration for their business by expanding into communities that hitherto, were relatively unreachable.

Quickteller Paypoint offers bill payments, airtime recharge, money transfers, deposits, withdrawals, government payments, lottery winnings and more.