How rural banks in Ghana can get ahead of mobile money trends
Yesterday, two of Ghana’s largest mobile network operators started their process of merging together. By 2019, Airtel and Tigo plan to integrate into AirtelTigo – one stronger, more robust network. The merge will improve network infrastructure and deliver wider coverage across Ghana. AirtelTigo plans to complete their integration by 2019.
With a better network, the use of mobile phones and mobile money will rise, following a path like M-Pesa in Kenya. Now is the time for rural banks in Ghana to get ready for changing demands from their clients. Mobile money will soon become a “must have” on the list of financial services offered by rural banks.
Which options does your rural bank have to adapt to mobile money trends? According to CGAP’s Focus Note about mobile banking, there are two common strategies that institutions take.
1. Connecting their client’s mobile wallets and their accounts
One first strategy is to buy technology that allows you to link your clients’ mobile wallet to their account at your bank. With this technology, your clients can access their accounts through their mobile phones and transfer money.
This option encourages savings. The client is able to deposit money into their account from their mobile phones. The downside: this technology can be costly if you are in a market where mobile money integration is new and there is little competition for the tech provider.
2. Investing in a flexible management information system
If you want to deliver financial services with many alternative channels, including mobile banking, it’s best to consider a more robust strategy. A flexible management information system (MIS) or core banking system (CBS) will enable your rural bank to react to your clients needs.
It’s unclear which mobile money service your clients will choose to use for their mobile banking. And your clients may expect your rural bank to link to the mobile money provider that they have selected. To deliver, your MIS needs to “automate the process of uploading and reconciling the repayment data from the m-banking platform” according to an MFI sustainability study. Automation is especially important if your rural bank serves a large client base from many branches.
Start your rural bank’s digital transformation today
Now is the time to prepare for changes in the microfinance market in Ghana. Oradian provides visionary rural banks in Ghana with Instafin, our cloud-based core banking system designed to enable you to become more competitive and grow in your market.