TECHNOLOGY investment in the banking sector is bringing about huge transformation in the operations, boosting efficiency and ultimately contributing to increased profit.
It is through technology that banks reach and make more customers particularly the unbanked population in the rural areas enabling them access and reaping much benefits of the banking services.
For example, the outstanding performance posted by NMB Bank last year is attributed to the huge investment in technology that helped to grow operating income and enhanced operational efficiency in customer experience and cost efficiency.
During the year under review, the bank’s operating income grew by 15 per cent and cost efficiency measures that contained operating costs at a marginal increase of only 2 per cent Year on Year (YoY).
With its mobile platform, the NMB Mkononi used by more than 3 million customers from all walks of life has currently eased in accessing conveniently various banking services.
FinScope Tanzania indicates that one of the major drivers of access to financial services in the country is the take up of digital financial services which require mobile phone ownership.
According to the Tanzania Communication Regulatory Authority (TCRA), the mobile subscriptions reached 51.2 million by December last year compared to 49.1 million in 2019.
Therefore, in a bid to customers’ confidence and protection against accidental damage in the event of accident to mobile phone, NMB partnered with Reliance Insurance to provide mobile phone insurance cover for its NMB Mkononi users.
The new insurance arrangement is supporting the government’s 10 years Financial Sector Development Master Plan that among others seek to have 80 per cent of adult people using financial services.
The NMB Bank Chief of Retail Banking Filbert Mponzi said that the new insurance product dubbed NMB Mkononi Insurance cover provides protection against accidental damage in the event of accident to mobile phone.
“With an increasing number of phone users in the country, there is an increasing need to drive greater efficiency and improve the overall consumer experience in the use of smartphones now used in a multiplicity of communication activities,” he said.
With this insurance policy that will be provided by Reliance Insurance, customers will receive up to 500,000/- per claim and a maximum of two claims per 12 months’ period. The claims process is supported by NMB bank. He added, a customer will not pay for the insurance rather using NMB Mkononi makes customer’s phone automatically eligible and have the insurance cover.
The cover is valid on monthly basis and all an NMB Mkononi user needs is to make at least one transaction a month ranging from all airtime purchases, QR code payments, payments insurance premiums and household bills like electricity and water.
The Reliance Insurance Chief Executive Officer Ravi Shankar said the partnership is important at this point of time for which there is increased number of smartphones use in the country but above all would also play role in enhancing insurance services.
“This is definitely supporting government plan to push awareness and use of insurance services in the country targeting to reach 50 per cent in 2030,” he noted.
Through the NMB’s mobile phone insurance cover, we have created a tailor-made, product and service, based on our deep expertise and underwriting experience in the banking sector. We believe this will allow customers better ease of mind and hence leading to greater customer engagement.
The Acting Director of Legal Enforcement from the Tanzania Insurance Regulatory Authority (TIRA) Emily Kiria commended NMB and Reliance Insurance for the initiative geared at making more people particularly those in the rural areas making use of insurance services in the country.
“This NMB and Reliance Insurance initiative will support the government’s Financial Sector Development Master Plan to have 80 per cent of adult people using insurance services and enhancing awareness to 50 per cent by 2030,” he said.