Africa’s telecommunication giant MTN Group has apparently set its sights on the fast-growing banking and financial services sector and disclosed plans to acquire a banking license to operate its payment services in Nigeria. Nigeria has become one of Africa’s major centre for the mobile money and financial services market which many foreign investors have begun to take advantage of. Speaking at a telecoms conference in Cape Town, South Africa on Tuesday, MTN’s CEO Rob Shuter, disclosed that the group will put in an application to acquire an independent banking license in Nigeria in December and should launch the bank in the second quarter of 2019.
The MTN CEO further stated, “And if all goes according to plan, we will also be launching mobile money in Nigeria probably around Q2 of 2019.” The banking license which is a derivative of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to drive financial inclusion in the country by 2020 has been confirmed by CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele. The CBN guidelines addressed to telcos, mobile money operators, banking agents, and the NCC for the payment service banks, as at October 2018, include a N2 million non-refundable license fee and N5 billion capital base.
Major telecommunications companies in the country such as Globacom, 9mobile, Airtel, are also expected to acquire the same license to operate payment service banks (PSB).
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