While the five-week lockdown lasted in Nigeria, it reechoed the import of cashless banking, redirecting many to several cashless transactions, services and merchandise options available out there.
From the comfort and safety of their homes, many ran their businesses, settled bills, sent money to their loved ones and made others payments using e-channel banking service tools.
However, foremost of the e-channel services is First Bank’s USSD*894#, which has become synonymous with convenience and quick banking.
The *894# is a quick banking service aimed at delivering power to the bank anywhere and at anytime. Top among the features that endear it to First Bank customers are its quick, convenience and easy to use, while the beneficiary accounts are credited instantly with alert notifications.
Speaking on the service, Chima Ezirim, group executive, e-Business & Retail Products, First Bank, explained that, “At First Bank, we are excited about the impact our innovative solutions are making in Nigerian payment landscape. Our *894# USSD banking has been a viable platform through which we take our banking services to the doorstep of our customers, right on the palm of their hands without the limitation of an internet connection”.
According to Ezirim, First Bank is committed to creating various avenues to enable Nigerians carry out various financial activities conveniently, safely and securely anytime and anywhere in Nigeria.
More importantly, the *894# is part of the Bank’s financial inclusion drive, in line with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) target of 80 percent financial inclusion by 2020. The target was expected to get Nigerians who do not bank or do online transactions to get onboard.
The target was also necessitated by the sad reality that 40.1 million, almost half of the about 96.4 million adult population of Nigeria, are financially excluded in a digital age where ePayment, eCommerce, among other hassle-free financial services, products and banking innovations are trending.
With the *894#, First Bank has made banking a lot more fun, anytime and everywhere for its customers even in the remote areas across the country, and contributing in bringing many into the financial scene.
The intrigue of the quick banking service is that it makes banking services available across all GSM networks, on any type of handset or device; iphone, android, blackberry and even simple feature phone famously referred to in Nigerian lingo as ‘kpalasa’.
Another selling point is that the *894# service requires no internet service connection and can be used in remote locations across Nigeria. It is delivered on the customers’ registered phone numbers linked to their FirstBank accounts.
Going by the many services a customer can enjoy without visiting the banking hall, the *894# practically turns a mobile phone into a mobile branch of the bank. “With the service, customers can transfer money to FirstBank and other banks in Nigeria; buy airtime for themselves and their loved ones; check account balance on their phones, and do lots more wherever they are”, the bank disclosed.
While Personal Identification Number (PIN) reset on the service requires only a quick dial of *894*0#, First Bank customers can activate the service in three steps.
First, by dialing *894*0#; enter a four digit PIN linked to the debit card; create a five digit PIN, and the registration is complete.
Explaining further the services on offer, the bank noted that customers can send money by simply dialing *894*Amount*Account Number#; select beneficiary bank; confirm amount, beneficiary name and enter five-digit PIN; then select account to debit.
For airtime recharge, customers can simply dial *894*Amount# to recharge for self; to recharge for others, dial *894*Amount*Phone Number# and enter five-digit PIN.
Moreover, with the service, the bank’s customers can transfer up to N100,000.00 per day and recharge airtime up to N10,000.00 per day.
More demanding activities such as generating mini account statement can also be done using the service. All the bank’s customers need is to dial *894*Account Number#, and to check account balance.
Truly the *894*00# is the magic code for convenient, yet secured banking anytime and anywhere in Nigeria.
The bank is also adding more offerings to the *894# quick banking service bouquet; for utility bill payment, payment for goods and services at any retail store in Nigeria, opening of savings account and linking customer BVN to the new accounts.
While First Bank has always been at the forefront of seamless banking transaction in a convenient and secured manner, First Bank’s group executive, e-Business & Retail Products, assured that the bank is also committed to ensuring that its customers are fully served with the USSD service, which implies that banking is lot more fun now for everyone, everywhere and anytime.
Culled from BusinessDay