Thursday, 29 May 2014

Retail Sector In Nigeria Has A Promising Future- Oduoza

Mr. Phillips Oduoza
Mr. Phillips Oduoza
Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc, Mr. Phillips Oduoza, has stated that Nigeria’s retail sector holds huge potential for growth. 
Oduoza said this in a keynote address at the 2014 ‘Retail Leaders Conference held in Lagos.
The UBA boss, represented by the bank’s Director of Consumer Banking, Mr. Ilesanmi Owoeye, listed several factors driving the growth of Nigeria’s retail industry.
These factors, according to him, include the ongoing reforms in key sectors of the Nigerian economy aimed at bridging infrastructural gap, reducing unemployment levels, improving literacy level and improving access to funding by SMEs, which will significantly impact the level of disposable income and effective demand in the near future, affording the sector unprecedented growth opportunity.
He also identified increasing technology penetration in Nigeria as another factor driving the growth of the retail sector as this is giving retailers access to valuable market information about purchasing trends as well as segment preferences, making it increasingly easy to adapt sales and marketing approaches and improve consumer experiences. 

CBN Directs Banks to Upgrade Chief Compliance Officers

CBN-logo-2105.jpg - CBN-logo-2105.jpgThe Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has directed all Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) and discount houses in the country to ensure that no chief compliance officer (CCO) is below the grade of a general manager without its prior approval.
The central bank stated this in a letter to banks and discount houses titled: “Status and Reporting Line of Chief Compliance Officers of Banks,” with reference number: BSD/DIR/GEN/LAB/07/013.
According to the letter signed on behalf of the Director of Banking Supervision by K.O. Balogun, available information had revealed that chief compliance officers of some banks and discount houses are below the grade of general manager without its prior approval.
The CBN noted that equally worrisome was the fact that most CCOs do not report directly to the board of directors of their respective institutions.
This, it stressed, was a flagrant disregard to extant laws and regulations on the subject.
“For the avoidance of doubt: the CBN circular ref: BSD/2/2002 dated 8th August, 2002 and FPR/DIR/GEN/001/022 dated 18th July 2013 directed that banks and discount houses should designate chief compliance officers, not below the grade of a general manager to, among other things, apply the provisions of the relevant Acts and circulars on money laundering at various levels of their institutions,” it stated.

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Nigeria’s Incoming Central Banker Faces Growing Challenges

As it prepares to host the World Economic Forum’s annual African conference later this week, Nigeria has suffered a spate of terrorist attacks that have horrified its citizens, rattled its government, and threatened to erode its reputation as an increasingly stable and prosperous democracy. Two bombings in the capital city of Abuja and the abduction of more than 200 schoolgirls in the north of the country have brought into focus the threat that Nigeria faces from the radical Islamist group Boko Haram.
Nigeria’s future central banker, Godwin Emefiele
Amid the turmoil, the government has been trying to calm investors who are concerned that President Goodluck Jonathan’s February suspension of Nigeria’s highly respected central banker, Lamido Sanusi, pointed to growing political interference in the country’s monetary management.
Sanusi’s replacement, Godwin Emefiele, is set to take up his new role as head of the central bank in June. Scarcely known outside the top echelon of Nigeria’s commercial banking world, Emefiele’s nomination in February caught the country’s finance community off guard: his name had never come up even as a rumored candidate.

CBN Refunds N13bn to Customers

240114N.CBN-Logo-.jpg - 240114N.CBN-Logo-.jpgThe Central Bank of Nigeria, (CBN) yesterday disclosed that it had refunded over N13 billion to bank customers that had suffered excess charges by their financial institutions.
The central bank said the refund to the customers were part of its responsibility as a regulatory body mandated to protect consumers of financial services in the country.
The CBN made the disclosure in Enugu at the opening of a one week sensitisation of financial consumers in Enugu state. The forum was aimed at promoting financial literacy among bank customers.
Representative of CBN's Director of Consumer Protection, Hajiya Khadija Kasim while addressing a media briefing said virtually all the banks in the country were involved in ripping-off customers which culminated in the refund of the whooping sum.
She said that the consumer forum was to enlighten customers of commercial banks, insurance and other financial institutions.
She enjoined bank customers in Enugu state to avail the opportunity of the forum to know all about their rights so as know when they are being excessively charged by their banks.
She noted that there are help desks in all financial institutions in the country charged with the responsibility of providing assistance and solutions to customers’ complaints, adding at anytime a consumer is not satisfied with the response of their banks, they could refer such complaints to the CBN.
Kasim recalled that it was after the global economic recession that the CBN took more seriously the need to address consumers’ needs.
She stressed that the CBN is very much concerned about consumer protection.
"We are here to inform consumers about their rights and also to make people know about achievements so far recorded by the department. Any bank found culpable of illegal deduction will be punished," Kasim said.
She also noted that the CBN is gradually phasing-out Commission on Turnover (CoT).

Source: ThisDayLive

Bank customers dump savings deposits for investment in T-Bills

With rising yields on fixed instruments such as  Treasury Bills, (TBs) of between 12 and 14 percent, bank customers are shifting investments to the instruments, leveraging on the higher returns, BusinessDay investigations have shown.
This is against the current meagre rate of between 0.5 to 4 percent interests being paid on savings, in addition to withholding tax being charged on the interest by banks.
The development is capable of impacting negatively on the net interest income of banks as well as financial inclusion being championed by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), as the banks will have fewer customers.
The CBN’s tightening monetary stance typified by hiher Monetary Policy Rate, (MPR) at 12 percent and the US tapering, have continnued to push yields on the interuments higher, making it more attractive to customers.
Indeed the 75 percent rate on cash reserve ratio, (CRR) on public sector deposits and 15 percent on private sector deposits, tend to enhance the position of the customers, as the era of cheap funds for banks to invest in the instruments is coming to an end.

FirstBank’s ‘FirstMonie’ hits milestone

FirstMonie, a mobile payment solution from First Bank of Nigeria Limited has surpassed the 1 million customer mark on its platform. This it has achieved in less than two years of its operations in Nigeria, and in its bid to enhance service delivery for the unbanked and underbanked.
According to Folake Ani-Mumuney, head, marketing and corporate communications, FirstBank, surpassing the 1 million mark on the FirstMonie platform shows the extent the bank will go to ensure that our customers have more choices of accessing banking services from any location they find themselves.
“We are pleased by this achievement, which signifies the level of FirstMonie’s acceptance among subscribers. We believe that the tremendous growth it has recorded so far illustrates the important role it plays in providing easy access to financial services for customers on the go,” Ani-Mumuney said.
She noted that the FirstMonie platform, which was created to align with the Central Bank of Nigeria’s policy to promote a cashless economy in Nigeria, offered an excellent medium for subscribers to disburse funds efficiently and securely to their loved ones across the nation.
FirstMonie was launched in September 2012, as part of FirstBank’s innovative drive to enhance financial inclusion and reduce the rate of unbanked adults in Nigeria. The FirstMonie solution was created to provide convenient and safer banking for the underbanked and unbanked to access their bank account and transfer funds with the use of their mobile phones. This enables subscribers to send and receive money, pay bills, buy airtime, and make sundry purchases in Nigeria without owning a bank account. The transaction on the platform has no time barriers and can be carried out at any time of the day.
Source: BusinessDay

Demystifying the ATM customer experience in Nigeria

The ATM in Nigeria has gone from a mysterious machine of very high distrust to a basic essential. Understandably, being at the perceived epicentre of online fraud and Internet scams has made Nigerians exceedingly weary of this machine which spits cash at the punch of just four digits. My personal take though, is that there exist more advanced hacking centres outside of Nigeria. Common knowlegde seems to suggest that parts of Eastern Europe and Asia top Nigeria by a country mile.
My wife and many others like her, who have vowed never to test the efficacy of the banks’ assurances on the safety and security of their ATM systems against the increasing ingenuity of fraudsters, have now become unwilling converts due to the higher risk of being unceremoniously shut out of modern day transactions.
Regulatory pressure a-la the Cashless Nigeria initiative by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has also played their part in this conspiracy against the conservatives. Hefty penalties have now being instituted on cash transactions beyond a certain threshold. Thankfully, she has broken ranks and acquired an ATM card just only last year.

Oil and Gas: Performance Marred By Alleged Unremitted Revenues

The oil and gas sector was characterized by irregularities during the period under the review as the country contended with petroleum products scarcity due to depleting reserves, delayed issuance of first quarter import allocation and delayed settlement of outstanding subsidy claims.
$20 Billion Unremitted Oil Revenue
The suspended governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, (CBN) Mallam Sanusi Lamid Sanusi broke the lid when he accused the NNPC of not remitting about $49. 8 billion oil proceeds due to the Federation Account. This figure was however brought down to about $10.8 billion inter-ministerial that met later on the issue.
Kerosene Subsidy Scandal
As if this was not enough, the NNPC during the quarter was also cut in another web of scandal relating to subsidy on kerosene as well as allegation that its members of staff collectN25 per litre mobilization fee from marketers before allocating kerosene to them.
This was also promptly denied in a statement signed by the former, Acting Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of NNPC, Dr. Omar Farouk Ibrahim, who challenged anyone with evidence of such payment to tender it so that the staff concerned could be identified and punished.
Source: Leadership