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Finance Bank footprint backs expansion on branches
|15 January 2013, 1:24:21|
The Finance Bank footprint has continued to grow with 52 branches. It has the second largest branch networks in the country with 65 automated teller machines (ATMs)spread across the entire nation.|
In back to back commissioning, Finance Bank has launched two centrally located and key branches in Lusaka, at Manda Hill and Levy Junction.
CEO and managing director Barkat Ali has publicly put faith in the branch network, and the bank plans to open additional branches in other provincial centers across the country in 2012. The bank has projected over ZMK20 billion for expansion and refurbishment of its branches. Ali says Finance Bank is responding to customers and other stakeholders challenge to the financial sector to extend and make banking more accessible across the country.
As of March 31st, 2012 the bank deposit base which is an important measure of performance has grown to over ZMK 1trillion, ‘a testimony of the confidence that our customers have in Finance Bank,’ Ali says.
The local branch remains a crucial part of the nation’s financial infrastructure, even as more customers manage their accounts via the internet and mobile phones. The bank has continued to record an increase in the number of customer base with over 121,000 accounts held. ‘We will continue to invest in technology and in developing our human resource with a view to ensure continued quality service delivery. Finance Bank has set aside over ZMK8 billion for this purpose.’
Ali commits Finance Bank to not only expanding financial literacy awareness through its branch and ATM growth but also promoting a savings culture in the Zambian community.
The presence of branches encourages a culture of savings. Without branch banking in low income and rural areas, banks stop being central to the culture in those communities therefore, it cannot assist business to grow and less jobs are created while households are unable to plan effectively for the future or even borrow cheaply.
Currently, Finance Bank’s loan book is growing steadily and stands at over ZMK600 billion of which nearly 20% is to the agriculture sector.
Working together with its partner, Credit Suisse, Ali says, ‘Finance Bank has extensive international expertise and local knowledge to offer the stability and security that our customers are looking for in banking.’
Finance Bank continues to consolidate its service offerings and recently partnered with its sister company Professional Life Assurance to introduce bancassurance products.
Bancassurance is an insurance solution in which a financial institution agrees to distribute as an agent insurance products underwritten by an insurance company through the bank’s infrastructure and network across the country. This service is available to all retail customers.
Speaking on partnership executive director, corporate banking, retail and marketing Helen Lunda said, ‘The introduction of Bancassurance has an added feature to Finance Bank’s core banking products and is a direct response to our customer’s expectation of accessing complete financial solutions that includes banking and insurance to their daily finance solutions.
Among the product offerings is the Bantubonse life insurance policy to the policyholder and their family in an unfortunate event of death. Customers
pay premiums as low as ZMK 30,000 per annum with the highest premium at ZMK 130,000.
Credit life mitigates credit risk to all new salary backed loans and retail consumer loans as assessed by the customers.
It covers loss of employment through redundancy,disability and incapacitation.
Finance Bank will act as agent for Professional Life Assurance products.
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