NIGERIA regulators have given South African telecommunication giant, MTN the go-ahead to run a conventional commercial bank.
MTN, which started operations in Nigeria in 2001, will now be able to offer services offered by commercial banks except granting credit and processing foreign exchange transactions.
‘The date of commencement will be communicated to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in accordance with its requirements,’ MTN said.
In a note to the Nigerian Exchange, MTN said the new outfit will be known as MoMo Payment Service Bank Limited.
‘We want to leverage the financial inclusion drive. We plan to give people who don’t have bank accounts or even ATM cards the opportunity to be able to do banking services,’ said MTN Nigeria CEO, Karl Toriola. ‘And we are leveraging our size. When we have subscribers of over 70 million spread across Nigeria with our infrastructural spread, we are well-positioned to cover everywhere. That’s exactly what we want to achieve,’ he added.
MTN Nigeria (MTNN), which provides one-third of the MTN Group’s sales, saw revenue climb to a record $3.69 bn last year, with profit leaping 45.5 percent to $652 million.
The company generates the bulk of its revenue from voice calls and data subscriptions.