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FirstBank Fintech Summit 5.0: Bridging the Gap Between Finance and Technology

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Dr. Adesola Adeduntan - FirstBank CEO - Investors King

In another selfless effort to demonstrate its commitment to financial services with strategic partnership geared towards growing the Fintech space in Nigeria, FirstBank, the country’s leading financial institution and Fintech frontrunner will virtually bring together thousands of fintech giants and enthusiasts in its 2021 Fintech Summit tagged Fintech Summit 5.0. The previous editions of the FirstBank Fintech Summit have been impactful in ensuring the business and banking public are better informed of latest technologies and advancement in the world of financial technology and electronic banking, irrespective of where they are across the globe.

This year’s event will be no different as it will be more enlightening and impactful. Reserve your seat in the FirstBank Fintech Summit 5.0 by registering via this link https://firstbanknigeria.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_NmkYfeckQqu4vjTWy5lr5w. The virtual event will hold by 10 am on Thursday, 7 October 2021.

The Summit themed “Open banking and its derivative opportunities for the financial ecosystem“’ will feature key and leading players in the banking and technology climate in Nigeria comprising policy influencers, regulatory officials etc. The event is open to everyone keen on being enlightened on Open Banking and the latest API initiatives.

To better understand FirstBank’s commitment and dedication to Nigeria’s growing fintech industry, it is imperative to highlight historical milestones that have set the bank apart, both locally and globally.

FirstBank introduced the first ATM Cash Deposit in Nigeria in 2011. This new technology ensures Nigerians can deposit at any nearby ATM 24 hours a day against the conventional method of waiting until Monday or the following morning to deposit as the bank closes between 4 pm to 5 pm Monday to Friday.

This move eased banking services by making cash deposit machines available, even on weekends, in a nation grappling with insecurity and a high crime rate. It helped curb robbery, ensure the safety of bank customers and guaranteed business continuity during holidays.

Similarly, FirstBank launched agent banking to further the Central Bank of Nigeria’s financial inclusion agenda and improve the number of Nigerians in the financial system and tax net. Since it was launched a few years ago, FirstBank has grown its banking agent, popularly called FirstMonie Agent, to over 130,000 agents nationwide.

FirstBank is the first bank in Nigeria to issue 10 million ATM cards and the second bank to do so in the entire African continent. In 2015 and 2016, FirstBank was also recognized by Interswitch as the first financial institution in Nigeria to achieve 100 million sustained monthly transactions in electronic payment.

This was before it took it a notch higher by introducing an alternative banking channel, WhatsApp Banking, Firstmonie Wallet as well as the recently launched LIT app to support existing channels like FirstMobile, Firstonline, etc.

What FirstBank has done and presently doing is to bridge the existing gap between finance and technology by collaborating with the right people and creating an enabling environment for fintech experts, innovators, cybersecurity experts and other tech giants to work together.
This is one of the reasons, FirstBank Fintech Summit was launched in 2016.

In the now yearly event, Nigeria’s most valuable banking brand with the largest financial inclusion network of over 750 branches and 130,000 banking agents (Firstmonie Agents) that operate across 772 of 774 local government areas, has consistently brought together thousands of participants year after year.

In 2020 alone, FirstBank FinTech Summit brought together over 6,000 participants from 52 countries despite COVID-19 disruption. A Silicon Valley-based innovator was chosen as keynote speaker to showcase the bank’s products to its wide audience and also serves as a platform for the communication of major policy initiatives and pronouncements that also provide clarifications to policy.

The annual Fintech Cocktail also offers the opportunity for networking and collaboration among Fintechs. Meaning, it creates opportunities for collaboration within the community and showcases small businesses and startups from the FirstBank platform. Being part of the FirstBank FinTech Summit 5.0 cannot be overemphasized.

According to FirstBank, it has formed an array of strategic partnerships geared towards expanding the Bank’s digital footprint across the Fintech space, as well as expanding its value-added service propositions through the yearly Fintech Summit. Some of these touch on the delivery of expanded lifestyle services on the Bank’s digital channels, expansion of tech-driven support services to SMEs, as well as consolidation of the Bank’s technical and transactional handshakes and collaborations within the payments space. FirstBank has been at the forefront of FinTech innovation in Nigeria.

In the last few years, FirstBank has revolutionised finance services with unique innovations like the introduction of WhatsApp banking channel, *894# Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD), Firstonline Internet Banking, Firstmonie Wallet, Firstmobile as well as LIT mobile banking application and FastTrack ATM amongst many others designed to enhance more financial operations without needing to physically interact with the machine.

Established in 1894, FirstBank has consistently built relationships with customers focusing on the fundamentals of good corporate governance, strong liquidity, optimised risk management and leadership.

Over the years, the Bank has led the financing of private investments in infrastructure development in the Nigerian economy by playing key roles in the Federal Government’s privatisation and commercialisation schemes. With its global reach, FirstBank provides prospective investors wishing to explore the vast business opportunities that are available in Nigeria, an internationally competitive world-class brand and a credible financial partner.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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Banking Sector

Guaranty Trust Holding Company (GTCO): Profit After Tax Inches Slightly Higher in Q3 2021

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GTCO Commemorates Listing on Nigerian Exchange - Investors King

Guaranty Trust Holding Company (GTCO Plc), Nigeria’s leading financial institution, grew profit after tax by 4.11 percent to N49.986 billion in the three months ended September 30, 2021.

This was slightly higher than the N48.012 billion filed in the third quarter (Q3) of 2020, according to the bank’s unaudited financial statements released on Tuesday and obtained by Investors King.

The lender’s interest income drops by 7.48 percent to N68.945 billion in the third quarter under review, down from N74.518 billion achieved in Q3 2020.

Interest expense inched slightly higher to N13.057 billion in Q3 2021, representing an increase of 5.3 percent when compared to N12.397 billion filed in the same period of 2020.

As expected, GTCO’s net interest income moderated by 10.03 percent from N62.121 billion in Q3 2020 to N55.887 billion in Q3 2021.

Net interest income after loan impairment charges stood at N54.608 billion in Q3 2021, a decline of 7.04 percent from N58.745 billion recorded in Q3 20210.

However, GTCO was able to plug further decline with a 67.39 percent increase in fee and commission income. The bank realised N18.318 billion in fee and commission income in Q3 2021, up from N10.944 billion charged in Q3 2020.

Fee and commission expense increased slightly to N3.343 billion in the quarter under review, up from N2.239 billion in Q3 2020.

The bank grew net fee and commission income by 72.07 percent to N14.976 billion in Q3 2021 from N8.704 billion achieved in Q3 2020.

Also, the bank’s net gains on financial instruments classified as held for trading dipped slightly to N8.048 billion in Q3 2021. While other income improved from N11.157 billion in Q3 2020 to N15.283 billion in Q3 2021.

Profit before income tax grew slightly by 2.11 percent to N58.852 billion in Q3 2021 from N57.638 billion in Q3 2020. The bank paid N8.866 billion in taxes in the period under review.

GTCO loses N9.491 billion to forex differential in the third quarter but also made N2.847 billion due to forex differential to take its total comprehensive income for the quarter N44.618 billion.

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Banking Sector

Wema Bank Changes Date of Board Meeting to October 26, 2021

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Wema Bank- Investorsking

Wema Bank Plc, one of Nigeria’s banks, on Monday announced it has changed the date of its board meeting from October 26, 2021 to October 28, 2021.

The lender disclosed in a statement signed by Johnson Lebile, Company Secretary and Legal Adviser.

The statement reads, “Further to the previous notice of September 30, 2021, in line with the Rules of the Nigerian Exchange Limited (the Exchange), we hereby inform the investing public that the meeting of the Board of Directors of Wema Bank Plc (the Bank or Company), earlier scheduled for October 26, 2021 to consider and approve the Company’s third quarter performance and Unaudited Financial Statements for the period ended 30 September 2021 (2021 Q3 UFS) along with other corporate actions, has been rescheduled to hold on October 28, 2021 at 10.00 a.m. in Lagos.

“The Company’s Closed Period which commenced on 1 st October 2021 will continue until 24 hours after the Bank’s 2021 Q3 UFS and other corporate actions have been made public in line with the Rulebook of the Exchange.”

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Banking Sector

Stanbic IBTC Reiterates Strategic Youth Agenda

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Stanbic IBTC - investorsking.com

Determined to further strengthen the strategic position young Nigerians occupy in the country, Stanbic IBTC, a member of Standard Bank Group, has continued to promote various programmes to get Nigerian youths engaged and empowered for better productivity and participation in the development of the nation.

The Group aimed one of its initiatives, the ‘Youth Leadership Series’ (YLS), at deepening financial and entrepreneurial knowledge among Nigeria’s younger generations. The initiative, which was launched in 2018, is held in institutions of higher learning across the nation and brings together mentors from across various sectors of the economy to encourage and inspire the next generation. 

Dr. Demola Sogunle, Chief Executive of Stanbic IBTC Holdings, spoke of the initiative. He stated that through one of the organisation’s CSI pillars, ‘economic empowerment’, the YLS was birthed as an avenue to get young Nigerians engaged and empowered to become future business leaders.

He said that Nigerian youths required support, guidance, and empowerment to propel them to the pinnacle of their various fields, and added that innovative projects and tech disruptions championed by youths in virtually every sector have proved their ingenuity, skill, brilliance, and resourcefulness.

Sogunle further stated that since youths easily get distracted by different challenges, the organisation wanted to ensure that they were aptly and constantly guided, mentored, inspired, and motivated, not just to attain their goals but to actualise their full potentials.

This year’s event which held virtually attracted youths from across Nigeria and various parts of the world including the UK, USA and UAE. It featured an array of speakers – Debo Adebayo, better known as Mr. Macaroni and  Ms. Ifedayo Agoro, the founder of Diary of a Naija Girl (DANG), an online lifestyle website, who spoke on ‘Winning with Social Media’; the duo of Olumide Soyombo, co-Founder, Bluechip Technologies and Tracy Batta, co-Founder, Smoothie Express who spoke on ‘Winning with Entrepreneurship’; while Akin Bamidele Akintola, Head of Equity Sales, Stanbic IBTC Stockbrokers and Yanmo Omorogbe, co-founder of Bamboo Invest, an investment platform that allows Nigerians to invest in United States stocks, both spoke on ‘Winning with Investments’.

All speakers shared their entrepreneurial experiences, challenges, and success stories in these areas.

Speakers at previous editions of the YLS included Kechi Okwuchi, a survivor of the ill-fated Sosoliso plane crash of December 2005, who later went on to bag a First Class Degree from the University of Thomas Houston, Texas and emerged a finalist at America’s Got Talent; Member Feese, survivor of the United Nations Building bomb blast in Abuja and Cobhams Asuquo, renowned music producer, who was born blind.

Also, Stanbic IBTC Bank, in collaboration with Creative Youth Community Development Initiative (CYCDI), and Covenant University, Ota and in alignment with the 73rd session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York City, engaged Nigerian youths on better understanding of the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and their role in its attainment.

The organisation also said that some needs of youths have been catered to with the Stanbic IBTC BluEdge Youth Account, targeted to help students and youths cultivate a savings culture very early in life.

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