Over the last few years I have been watching the trend in the country and the policies that the leadership of this nation has been making. For a lot of people it may not make a lot of sense but those who can sense or spot or sight opportunities will see that as the government is creating policies, they are indirectly creating more opportunities for people who can take full advantage of them. I just want to share with you some of the opportunities I think people can look into at this time if you are thinking about getting a business started or you just want to diversify or expand your current business.
I find it very interesting that the Central Bank of Nigeria wants to make sure we carry less cash around but has not put in place adequate measures in order for that to become a reality without the citizens being at the receiving end of the inadequacies of the banks! There are so many flaws in the current operations of the bank and in the way they serve their customers but unfortunately not too many of them have thought about doing something quickly. Most business in Nigeria either small or big usually wait for someone to take the lead with innovation before they start joining. I will want to talk about a few issues then raise some opportunities I see in them. The issues people are having include:
Malfunctioning ATM machines
People are being debited without being paid
The issue of being debited without being paid usually takes about 5 working days to be corrected when reported to banks. Only a few banks have a system in place to automatically credit you Not all ATM machines accept all the various cards being issued by the banks
Online bank transfer is still not as popular as it should be among Nigerians despite the level of literacy and the number of those who can use the internet or mobile phones effectively.
I think we do not have enough ATM machines and not all the ones we have are working well so there are still too many people standing in front of the machine to collect money
From some of the issues mentioned above, if you take a good look you will be able to see some opportunities but I should say that one major opportunity that people can still take advantage of in this country is the card technology. From what I have seen so far, I think it’s only the verve card issued by interswitch and the master card issued by Gurantee Trust Bank that can still allow you make payments for certain things online but that’s still very restraining. The interesting part again is that the cash less policy of the central bank which is to reduce the amount of cash being carried around is only being done is a few states for now because they say it’s the pilot phase and when they see how it works they will now extend it to all the 36 states of the federation. I think business owners should go and get ready and as well position themselves in those states where central bank has not yet enacted the cash less policy.
The only other thing I have seen is that some online payment merchants have created platforms through which you can make payments into the account of service providers or product markets by having a facility installed on their website. Once the facility is installed on the website, most of the debit cards in the country can be used to make payments but the people have more needs than just being able to make payments with their debit cards on a few people’s websites! Although the POS has been introduced to business owners for them to make use of in order to reduce the cash they carry around but so many business owners are still not embracing it and I think it’s just because some of them think that the POS is still too expensive! They are wondering why they should buy POS at over N25,000 or even more in order to help banks get more money when the banks will still charge the business owners on their transactions! I think any smart bank should be able to give free POS to its customers who are business owners because whatever is being paid for goes directly into an account domicile with them and they are deducting for the transactions.
I have not really opened it all up but for those who know how to maximize opportunities, you at least have an idea of one of the directions you can look into to get things done. This is big and people need to cash in on banking related card technologies that will truly help people enjoy transferring funds to anywhere in the world without being stressed and also getting paid without too much stress. Seize the opportunities now!
Fola Daniel Adelesi
Speaker | Author | Consultant
+234 803 416 3006