Business and Economics

Mobile money poses no threat to the banking sector-Beige boss

The Chief Executive Officer of BEIGE Capital, Mike Nyinaku, has asserted that the Mobile Money service poses no threat to the future of the banking sector in Ghana.

The Chief Executive Officer of BEIGE Capital, Mike Nyinaku, has asserted that the Mobile Money service poses no threat to the future of the banking sector in Ghana.


Mr. Nyinaku made the assertion during a pre-event interview he granted to the media at the Ghana Economic Forum, where he was a guest speaker. Though the surge in Mobile Money usage has caught the attention of many Ghanaians, some bankers are  apprehensive about the position of the Mobile Money service, as against the future of the banking sector. A report carried out in the B&FT in one of its May 2016 edition paints a glowing picture of the growth of Mobile Money service in Ghana.

The report states, “The penetration of mobile money in the country has seen an astronomical rise for the fourth year running with last year’s value of transaction reaching GHC35.4billion, an increment of more than 216 percent over the previous year’. The report states further that “…in 2014 three telecom operators (Airtel, Tigo and MTN) were able to do transactions worth about GHS11.2billion across the country.” Also the 2016 banking survey conducted by Pricewaterhouse Coopers, (PwC) in collaboration with the Ghana Association of Bankers, and launched in Accra recently on the theme, “How to win in an era of Mobile Money,” further heightens the apprehensions and  extends the debate on the future and the direction of the Mobile Money service as against the traditional role of the banking sector. The survey, as reported by the Daily Graphic, “added a survey of chief executive officers and chief finance officers of banks to pick their perspectives on the emerging mobile money explosion.” According Mr. Thomas Kyei-Boateng, who presented the findings of the CEO and CFOs’ survey, a total of 71.4 per cent of the respondents in the survey saw the mobile money revolution as both a threat and an opportunity depending on how the banking institution responded to it.

The threat, on the part of the banks, was also because of the potential for telcos and other mobile money operators to enter into the banking space. Mr Kyei-Boateng also pointed out that almost 30 per cent of the respondents saw it as an opportunity only without any threat.

Adding his voice to the on-going discussion, a Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr Johnson Asiama, said: “the total value and volume of mobile money transactions have outstripped all other non-cash transactions, except cheques, with total money float balances at the end of June this year reaching about GH¢680 million ($172 million), compared to about GH¢341 million over the same period last year. Registered agents also reached 108,000 within the period, compared to about 36,000 for the same period last year.” (Daily Graphic,26/08/2016). This, he said, confirms the growing acceptance of mobile money across the country. Dr. Johnson Asiamah added that the BoG was committed to facilitating the evolution with the enabling regulatory environment for mobile money to promote financial inclusion without risking the general safety and soundness of the financial system.

Mr. Nyinaku was however of the view that notwithstanding the successes chalked by the mobile money service, there is no way the role of the banking sector will be overtaken by it. He asserts, “Mobile Money service is a transaction enabler, it is not banking so the traditional importance of banking will not be replaced by the upsurge of the use of mobile money service.” He however believes that the mobile money service will increasingly become a transaction process enabler in the delivery of goods and services; and thus, complementing the effort of the traditional role of the banking sector. “It will however not replace the traditional role of the banking sector,” he emphasized.

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