Access More app, CSR initiatives earn Access Bank awards
Access Bank has invested N17.8 billion it its various CSR initiatives, reaching over 1,125 communities and more than 1.4 million people.
Access Bank Plc., one of Africa’s leading financial services institutions, has won the 2021 Finance Derivative Awards for “Best Mobile Banking App in Nigeria.” The bank also won the award for “Best CSR Bank in Nigeria.”
The organisers said the Finance Derivative Awards was established to honour and reward excellence in the performances of companies across different business sectors, especially finance.
Access Bank’s “Access More” app has been gaining popularity for efficiently serving both basic and complex transaction requirements of its customers. The app offers services including funds transfer, payment of bills, and mobile top up. It also provides highly demanded customer services, including account modification requests, checking account balances, and accessing bank statements. These and other transactions and services are efficiently delivered on the app, while offering convenience to the customers.
The Access More app is one of the many initiatives of Access Bank in embracing digital banking and innovation. Through innovative technologies, banks across the globe have been deploying strategic measures to expand financial access, improve customers’ experience and deliver innovative products and services.
In today’s world of fast-paced digitalisation and with the rise of financial technology (fintech) firms, banks are not only required to adapt in order to preserve their relevance and retain and grow their customer base. They need to be at the fore front of innovation, leveraging their balance sheets to deliver superior value to their customers. The needs of customers have also grown from basic financial services to accessing them on the go. Banks are also required to provide solutions appropriate to the new business models of customers operating in the highly competitive, innovation-driven economy.
Access Bank has continued to demonstrate its commitment to promoting the innovation culture within the bank. In the wider ecosystem of innovation, Access Bank’s Africa Fintech Foundry brings operators in the demand and supply sides together to support solutions development. This is not only enhancing the adoption and use of technology within the bank, but it is also impacting the larger economy.
The high-tech services provided by the Access More app are delivered through user-friendly interfaces. This has been hailed by the bank’s customers, and the app has also been highly rated by independent professional tech reviewers. The app has recorded nearly two million downloads across the app stores and is just a few points to attaining five-star status.
The growing recognition of Access Bank’s commitment to sustainability and CSR is to be expected. Since it first launched its sustainability strategy over a decade ago, the bank has not looked back in ensuring that its processes and operations promote economic progress, societal good, and environmental responsibility.
Access Bank’s corporate social responsibility initiatives are implemented across the communities where it operates. During the on-going COVID-19 pandemic, the bank’s CSR initiatives have continued to positively impact the healthcare, education, sports, arts, social welfare and the environment sectors.
As cases of the coronavirus disease started to rise in Nigeria in March 2020, the government looked to corporate organisations operating within and outside the country for financial and material assistance for controlling the spread of infection, testing and treating cases, and providing material support to people who were susceptible to the economic and financial fallout of the pandemic. Access Bank was quick to respond with a donation of N1 billion. The bank also went ahead to champion the founding of the Coalition Against COVID-19 (CACOVID), which raised over N35 billion with the involvement of other organisations and individuals.
Access Bank’s approach to delivering its sustainability commitment is to improve the institution and the society – with due attention given to environmental preservation. To deliver impact at scale, the bank collaborates with other institutions and stakeholders. This was very helpful in forming the partnership for CACOVID. Through the coalition, the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), tasked with accounting and caring for COVID-19 victims, received over 60,000 test kits and unveiled a program to reach 2 million households with food palliatives.
Access Bank has invested N17.8 billion in its various CSR initiatives, reaching over 1,125 communities and more than 1.4 million people. Approximately 420 NGOs have benefitted from financial and technical support provided by the bank since 2018.
Nigeria faces acute economic challenges. This is evident in the country’s alarming statistics of unemployment and increased poverty rate. To address the intertwined challenges, Access Bank is strengthening its support for small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs). According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), SMEs accounted for nearly half of the growth of the Nigerian GDP in the last five years, despite the constraint the business owners faced in accessing financing to grow their businesses.
Access Bank is responding to the challenge by increasing its financing for small businesses, including those that were devastated by the #EndSARS protests in October 2020. The bank has disbursed N3 billion in interest-free loans to about 66 businesses that were affected by the violence that broke out in the course of the protests that were intended to be altogether peaceful. Access Bank also provided various assistance to individuals and communities to enable them to recover from the negative impact of the protest.
The Finance Derivative Awards cited the foregoing and other commitments of Access Bank in announcing the bank as the winner of the two prestigious awards, adding to the rich collection of award plaques that have been won by the bank.
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