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Stanbic IBTC Bank Nigeria PMI: Private Sector Activity Growth Eases In August

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assured them of the firm’s unwavering commitment to providing the best custodial services

Olushola Okunlade Writes

Business conditions in Nigeria’s private sector improved modestly midway through the third quarter, but the rate of growth slowed from that seen in July.

Softer upticks were recorded in output, new orders, and purchasing activity while employment rose at a quicker pace. At the same time, overall input price inflation rose at the second-fastest rate on record while sentiment moderated to the weakest since last November.

The headline figure derived from the survey is the Purchasing Managers’ Index™ (PMI®).

Readings above 50.0 signal an improvement in business conditions in the previous month, while readings below 50.0 show a deterioration. The headline PMI registered at 52.3 in August, down from 53.2 in July, signaling another improvement in business conditions. That said, the growth rate was weaker than the long-run series average. New orders rose for the twenty-sixth month running in August which panelists linked to general improvements in customer demand. The rate of growth did ease from July, however, amid elevated prices. Higher sales underpinned a second successive uptick in output in the Nigerian private sector.

The growth rate was broadly in line with that seen in July but was softer than the long-run series average. Of the four monitored subsectors, three registered output growth. Agriculture topped the rankings, followed by wholesale & retail and services. Manufacturers, meanwhile, recorded a fall in output levels during August. Despite slowdowns in output and new order growth, firms added to their headcounts at a quicker pace in August. The overall rate of job creation was modest and the highest for three months. Subsequently, firms continued to reduce their backlogs, but the rate of decline was fractional amid difficulties sourcing some key inputs. Advance payments led to quicker supplier delivery times in August.

In fact, vendor performance improved to the greatest extent in three months. Quicker lead times allowed firms to add to their inventory holdings. Stocks of purchases rose at a slower pace than that seen in July, however. On the price front, higher commodity and transportation expenses exerted upward pressure on purchase costs. At the same time, firms raised their staff wages to motivate their workforces and in light of higher living expenses. The overall rate of input price inflation was the second-fastest in the survey’s history, surpassed only by that seen in November 2021. Looking ahead, firms remained optimistic about output growth in the year early, as has been the case since the survey began in January 2014, but the degree of positivity was the weakest for nine months.

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Carbon Doubles Revenue, Continues To Disrupt Credit Banking In Nigeria With ‘Carbon Zero’

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Carbon Doubles Revenue, Continues To Disrupt Credit Banking In Nigeria With ‘Carbon Zero’

…Debit card ‘Pink passport’ upgraded to include more services

Olushola Okunlade Writes

Carbon, a credit-led pan-African digital bank has doubled its client base and revenue since 2018 primarily due to its disruptive ‘Carbon Zero’ product. The company’s published 2022 financial report shows a remarkable revenue climb from ₦3.7Bn in December 2018 to ₦7.7bn in December 2021. The product also contributed heavily to the tremendous growth of the company’s customer base to over 3 million active users.

Since its inception as ‘One credit’ in 2012, through its evolution as ‘One-fi’, ‘Paylater’, and finally ‘Carbon’ in 2018, the bank has firmly placed its customers’ needs at the center of its innovative products and services.

“I got my loan approved in less than 5 minutes. I was able to make bank transfers and online payments swiftly. Thanks for this app.” said an excited customer Odunjo Olakunle

The product has been designed to perform better than a loan; with Carbon Zero, customers can make purchases online and offline and spread the cost of any bill and pay in 4 installments at 0% interest. In addition, by signing up on the web or using the Carbon app, customers receive a N30,000 spending limit.

Carbon takes pride in the fact that it has made finance more accessible to Nigerians, offering not only affordable loans but also a deposit account, a high-yield savings account, free bill payments, free transfers, and debit cards. 

Attesting to the uniqueness of Carbon, Olowolafe Sunday Oladelestated “They got me covered during the ‘rainy days’. Moreso, if you’re tired of all these traditional banks and their hectic stuffs, just get carbon. From loans to paying bills, and most importantly, the savings and investment programs there is just too much” 

Carbon Doubles Revenue, Continues To Disrupt Credit Banking In Nigeria With ‘Carbon Zero’

The bank also expanded the services provided by its debit card, enabling it to do more than just make payments. Dubbed the ‘Pink Passport,’ the Carbon debit card now allows users to buy and split payments in 4 at 0% interest in both online and offline transactions.

In January 2022, the company announced a new Carbon Zero partnership with global retail chain outlet SPAR. The partnership is poised to help even more Nigerians buy anything at any Spar store and pay for items in a wide range of categories in installments at 0% interest.

Know More About Carbon: Carbon is a credit-led digital bank offering modern banking services to ambitious, youthful, unrelenting Africans looking for value and control over their finances.

Carbon Zero is a buy now pay later product that allows individuals to purchase anything from pretty much anywhere, splitting the payment into 4 interest-free installments.

The product has been designed to perform better than a loan; with Carbon Zero, customers can make purchases online and offline and spread the cost of any bill and pay in 4 installments at 0% interest. In addition, by signing up on the web or using the Carbon app, customers receive a N30,000 spending limit.

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Banks Not Hoarding New Naira Notes, Normalcy Returning Soon – ACAMB

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Banks Not Hoarding New Naira Notes, Normalcy Returning Soon - ACAMB

Olushola Okunlade Writes

The Association of Corporate Affairs Managers of Banks (ACAMB) has reacted to speculations on banks hoarding new naira notes against Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) directives.

ACAMB empathizes with the Nigerian public on the unintended hardships being faced in the process of the ongoing rollout of re-designed naira notes and enhanced cashless policy.

A statement signed by Mr. Rasheed BolarinwaPresident, ACAMB stated: “There is no doubt that the unintended constraints in the withdrawal of old naira notes and circulation of new naira notes, alongside the national policy to enhance cashless transactions, have had UNINTENDED effects on the generality of the Nigerian populace.

“Nigerian Banks have invested an estimated total sum in excess of N100 billion in setting up and maintaining cutting-edge electronic channels over the past few years as part of an ongoing commitment to seamless customer experience and real-time digital financial transactions. From internet banking to mobile apps, Automated Teller Machines (ATMs), Point of Sales (PoS) merchants, mobile wallets, Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) codes, agents, and digital franchises among others; not less than 80 per cent of Nigerians now enjoy one form of digital or cashless transaction or another, powered by investments by Nigerian Banks.”

“These commitments by Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) have seen Nigeria rising steadily and recognised as having arguably Africa’s most advanced digital financial services industry and one of the world’s top 10 real-time payment markets. It is a national pride and proof of Nigerian Banks’ commitment to customer service that Nigeria is regarded as having Africa’s most digitized banking industry. Nigerian Banks remain committed to continuing investments in seamless and secured digital banking that EXCITE customers to voluntarily use and rely on the various digital and alternate PAYMENT SYSTEMS available.”

In view of its numerous benefits and the cutting-edge capability of the Nigerian banking sector, ACAMB fully supports the enhanced cashless policy championed by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). The entire banking sector is working with the apex Bank and other stakeholders to urgently address constraints in the implementation and ensure that Nigerians suffer no untoward pains in the transition process.

Nigerian Banks are currently working with the CBN to ensure that customers have access to cash through ATMs and other channels as well as Over-The-Counter (OTC) in the banking halls. ACAMB AFFIRMS without any equivocation that Banks are not in any way hoarding or holding back naira notes or engaging in any act inimical to our avowed commitment to exciting customer experience. ATMs are being loaded every day and cash is being paid as provided by the CBN, as regularly being checked by CBN Inspectors and other regulators including anti-graft agencies.

In the past few hours, Banks have taken additional measures to quicken the flow of naira notes. These measures, among others, include the deployment of extra technical supports for online payments, additional security at ATMs to ensure all-clock usage, technological back-up to reduce online downtime to the barest minimum, additional staff deployment to counters to attend to cash transactions and timely interbank and inter-branch networking to bridge any gap. We are confident that these measures, in addition to efforts by the regulatory CBN, will result in greater ease of access and cash liquidity. The Federal Government and the CBN have reiterated similar readiness to address any constraint in the cyclical flow, including making adjustments, where necessary.  ACAMB urges Nigerian banking public to exercise patience and not to resort to any untoward behavior against Bank staff or banking facilities. Nigerian Banks, the majority of which are publicly quoted, are owned by millions of Nigerians and provide employment to several millions of staff, who work 24/7 to ensure that the generality of Nigerians has reliable and secured globally competitive banking services.

The cashless policy is generally in line with the yearnings of most Nigerians for the elimination of corrupt practices in financial transactions, adequate security and improvements in law enforcement, and the general integrity of the wealth creation process. As shown by global evidence, cashless policy helps in curbing crimes such as; kidnapping, banditry, and official sleaze, among others.

The cashless or digital transaction is also a boost to commerce and industry; as well as public finance. It is noteworthy that digitization of public finances of many states and at national level has led to phenomenal improvement in REVENUE GENERATION, which form the basis of improved infrastructural renewals Nigerians now cherish.  It is also noteworthy that all stakeholders agreed on the importance and advantages of the redesigning of naira notes. The redesigning of naira notes safeguards the Nigerian economy and the country’s sovereignty, by strengthening the nation’s currency flow and control. We believe that ongoing concerted efforts will address the constraints currently being experienced in the cyclical flow of the new naira notes and the legal tenders generally.

Banks and customers are inseparable stakeholders as they exist for one another. It is, therefore, detrimental to the interest of the general banking public to disrupt banking operations by untoward actions against Bank staff or vandalisation of banking facilities. The Nigerian banking industry owes its global success as a leader in digital banking to its enthusiastic customers and remains committed to doing everything possible to ensure customers continue to have delightful experiences; in the banking halls and across the electronic and other alternate channels. ACAMB implores Nigerians to consider the big picture of the advantages of the redesigning of the naira and enhanced cashless policy, and therefore exercise patience, as stakeholders work to ensure normalcy. Customers must demonstrate ownership of their Banks and eschew any act that could lead to the disruption of banking operations or damage to banking facilities.

ACAMB shall continue to engage all stakeholders and stimulate effective communications to foster greater understanding and forbearance.     

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Sterling Bank States Reason On New Notes Distribution At Ado-Ekiti Branch

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Ademola Adesina Public Relations and News Management

Written by Olushola Okunlade

Sterling Bank PLC has stated why it did not disburse the N6 million in the N200 denomination found in its vault in its Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State branch.

The bank explained on Sunday after a viral video surfaced on social media indicating new naira notes worth N6 million in its vault.

Following the discovery of officials of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) who stormed the bank premises unannounced to discover new N200 notes worth N6 million inside the vault of the bank.

The official, who identified himself simply as Owoeye, a Deputy Director, made the discovery public, ordering that the branch must commence the dispensing of the money the following morning at the latest.

In a statement on Sunday, Sterling Bank PLC said at the time the fund was discovered, it was yet to configure its Automated Teller Machine for the dispensing of N200 notes.

It said the new N1,000 and N500 notes in its possession at the time had been disbursed.

The statement, titled: “New Notes Distribution At Ado-Ekiti Branch,” said: “We would like to state the facts surrounding our branch in Ado Ekiti formally.

“The Naira notes referenced were received prior to the re-configuration of the branch’s Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) to dispense the 200 Naira denomination.

“On January 23, 2023, a regulatory official visited our branch in Ado-Ekiti and the vault contained N 6,000,000 in N200 denominations.

“During the visit, the official observed that we had run out of N1,000 and N500 notes on that day and were unable to load the N200 as the ATMs had not yet been configured to dispense N200 notes.

“At the time of the visit, the subsisting instruction was that the newly designed notes were not to be dispensed over the counter.

“All our ATMs have been dispensing the available quantities of the N1000 and N500 denominations of the newly designed currency as received since the commencement of the policy. We have also successfully reconfigured our ATMs nationwide to dispense N200 notes.

“All denominations can now be withdrawn from our ATMs and over the counter in line with a regulatory pronouncement on February 2, 2023.

“We hereby confidently assure the public that the branch was not hoarding any funds and that Sterling remains at the forefront of ensuring that this exercise is a resounding success.

“Together, we will all overcome this inconvenience and come out stronger.”

Sterling Bank Plc. statement received by BusinessEcho Magazine reads

New Notes Distribution At Ado-Ekiti Branch: We would like to formally state the facts surrounding our branch in Ado Ekiti.

  1. The Naira notes referenced were received prior to the re-configuration
    of the branch’s Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) to dispense the 200
    Naira denomination.
  2. On January 23, 2023, a regulatory official visited our branch in Ado-Ekiti and the vault contained N 6,000,000 in N 200 denominations.
  3. During the visit, the official observed that we had run out of N1,000
    and N500 notes on that day and were unable to load the N200 as the
    ATMs had not yet been configured to dispense N200 notes.
  4. At the time of the visit, the subsisting instruction was that the newly
    designed notes were not to be dispensed over the counter.
  5. All our ATMs have been dispensing the available quantities of the
    N1000 and N500 denominations of the newly designed currency as
    received since the commencement of the policy. We have also
    successfully reconfigured our ATMs nationwide to dispense N200 notes.
  6. All denominations can now be withdrawn from our ATMs and over the
    counter in line with regulatory pronouncement on February 2, 2023.
    We hereby confidently assure the public that the branch was not hoarding
    any funds and that Sterling remains at the forefront of ensuring that this
    exercise is a resounding success.
    Together, we will all overcome this inconvenience and come out stronger.
    Ademola Adesina
    Public Relations and News Management

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