Airtel Networks limited has entered into a partnership with Equity Bank in Kenya and First Bank of Nigeria that will offer comprehensive mobile commerce solutions to their customers in Kenya and Nigeria, through Airtel Money.
In Kenya the service, available to all customers with Airtel lines, will enable customers from both Airtel and Equity Bank to access Airtel mobile banking platforms, perform agency cash transactions at Equity Bank branches and also enable Airtel services customers to withdraw money at any Equity Bank countrywide. Airtel Money will also enable customers to pay their utility bills, receive bank transaction alerts, check account balance and receive mini statements, among other services.
In Nigeria the partnership aptly titled the ‘Firstmonie Talkmore Campaign’ will enable Airtel Network’s subscribers who sign up to the FirstMonie platform to send money, receive money, buy airtime, pay bills and so much more with the use of their mobile phones without the need of a bank account. Duly registered Airtel subscribers who register for the FirstMonie service will receive N100 e-value and will be eligible for N240 bonus Airtel airtime.
Speaking at the Kenya launch, Equity Bank Group CEO Dr. James Mwangi said: “We are pleased to enter into this agreement with Airtel, which will further strengthen our commitment to extending financial inclusion across East Africa by enabling the unbanked and under-banked to enjoy the benefits of mobile payments, while also giving us the opportunity to better serve Airtel customers.”
The Head, Marketing & Corporate Communications, FirstBank, Mrs. Folake Ani-Mumuney said the FirstMonie platform which facilitates the entry of the unbanked and under-banked population into the financial system offers an excellent medium for Airtel subscribers to send funds securely to their families and friends anywhere in the country.
While emphasizing that Airtel believed in the delivery of innovative and relevant mobile commerce solutions that make life easier for its customers, Mr. Jayant Khosla, CEO Airtel Africa- Anglophone, also added that they will continue to educate their customers on the benefits of using Airtel Money mobile commerce solutions including the product’s convenience and ease of use.
Airtel Money is fast becoming the preferred way of sending and receiving money across the region with customers widely using it to pay utility bills such as electricity, water and pay-television subscriptions. The process is fully automated and reflects in real time providing customers with a faster and more secure mode of carrying out their transactions.
The partnerships will also help drive mobile money adoption in sub-Saharan Africa where Airtel Money has expanded to 16 operating countries and demand for provision of convenient financial transaction processing services for governments, corporations and institutions is rising.