Inlaks, a financial technology solutions provider in Nigeria and sub-Saharan Africa, has introduced a solar-powered mobile branch solution to eliminate the constraints associated with brick and mortar bank branches.
According to the Director, Infrastructure Business, Inlaks, Tope Dare, the solution meant to empower over 46.9 million unbanked Nigerians, will enable financial institutions to overcome the challenges of growth, operational efficiency and responsibility to deliver the highest quality.
In a statement on Sunday, Dare noted that the initiative would promote self-service consumer experience and project the strongest brand image to minimise costs and complexity of maintaining and managing self-service channels.
He said, “This mobile solution has been designed to provide customers convenient access to cash at remote locations as well as busy areas without physical bank structures. The vehicle can be dispatched to specific locations to provide a second or third ATM during events such as trade fairs, festivals, exhibitions and conferences.
“With our unique mobile branch solution, African banks will not be required to have physical branches before enrolling millions of their unbanked population as the mobile banking platform will provide a cost-effective method to service smaller or targeted markets.”
Explaining how the company was working with the banks to achieve the objective of reaching the unbanked, Dare said Inlaks would collaborate with financial institutions planning to establish new branches to open on-site solar-powered mobile solution while their permanent branch was under construction.
He said that with the mobile bank solution, banks could solicit and open new accounts on-site, issue cards, engage in the BVN enrolments and linkages, adding that the solution would allow banks to reinforce existing relationships and educate customers on available digital banking services.
According to Inlaks, banks can also target major employers by enhancing banking relationships through the services provided by the solar-powered mobile branch solution.
The mobile bank branch solution would be totally self-contained for power and security with a mobile unit as integral part of bank’s disaster recovery plan and an enhancement to a bank’s existing ISO 22301 (BCMS) certification, Inlak stated.
The statement read, “Some features incorporated into the mobile unit include a CCTV camera positioned at strategic positions; burglar alarm system; state-of-the-art fire system; a 3KVA Xantrex inverter; a backup system with batteries, rack, connectors; provision of a solar system for power source, and a power generator. Others include provision of power source, inverter air conditioner and photo sensor lightings for security lights.”
“The mobile bank branch is a moving bill board with a bank’s name and logo. A bank can market for new branch openings, new products and services offered by the bank. Before a bank closes an unprofitable branch, the bank should consider a mobile branch as an alternative. Banks such as First Bank, Wema Bank, Sterling Bank, Access, Stanbic Bank and Fidelity Bank have already taken advantage of the mobile branch solution,” he added.