United Bank for Africa to Launch Chat Banking on WhatsApp in Nigeria

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Nigerian lender, United Bank for Africa (UBA) is set to launch a Chat Banking solution dubbed ‘Leo’ on WhatsApp, Clickatell, an authorized WhatsApp business solution provider, has announced.

The service, which will go live for the first time in Nigeria, will allow customers to conduct banking activities in a secure and convenient manner, by communicating with their bank via a verified WhatsApp chat.

The platform was made possible through Clickatell Transact’s ‘.Control’ (dot-Control) platform.

The .Control platform for Chat Banking allows banks to roll out commonly used banking activities like checking balances, money transfer and purchasing digital products and services across popular communication channels like USSD and now WhatsApp. The platform offers flexibility, reliability, fraud and risk management for banks and a convenient on-demand banking capability for consumers wherever they are.

Nigeria is recognized as ground zero for global financial inclusion with a rapidly accelerating move from the informal economy to the formal sector. A Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) analysis titled ‘EFInA Access to Financial Services 2016 Survey’, assessed that 48.6%, or 46.9 million Nigerians, of the adult population, are now formally served by banks or similar. The introduction of Chat Banking from Clickatell is accelerating the banking adoption curve by eliminating the business and operational overhead required to roll out convenience banking across popular communication channels and in different countries.

After the banking platform launches in Nigeria with UBA, consumers will be able to conduct their banking activities on WhatsApp and (Unstructured Supplementary Service Data) USSD with additional channels slated for 2019.

“Clickatell Transact is proud to be a market leader with the launch of this innovative solution, aimed at improving the consumer experience, creating financial inclusion and amplifying technological advancement in the banking industry,” the company said in a statement.

“Our customers are at the heart of our business and we as a bank, are never relenting in matching our words with equal action.  In today’s fast-paced world with demands for quick responses, our aim is to make banking seamless and effortless for our millions of existing and potential customers,” commented Kennedy Uzoka, Group Managing Director.

“United Bank for Africa is a technology-driven institution with vast knowledge in the business that we do and Leo, being a tested dependable and intelligent personality, will replicate on WhatsApp, the success it has experienced on the Facebook Messenger platform.  It is a solution that is from the customer’s standpoint, easy to use by anyone regardless of your demography,” said Group Head of UBA’s Online Banking, Mr Austine Abolusoro, following the launch.

“Clickatell’s mission is to help its clients be on the forefront with not just innovative services, but also operationally reliable and scalable products which offer convenient services for their customers. With the introduction of our .Control platform and integration with WhatsApp we are firmly supporting our clients putting their consumers first” said Jeppe Dorff, Managing Director & Executive Vice President of Clickatell’s Transact Division.

“We are building on the exceptional momentum we have seen in Africa and have an exciting roster of banks going live with the Transact platform across Africa in the coming quarters”, Mr. Dorff added.



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