By Kingsley I. Ilechukwu , Senior Correspondent Lagos
The Chief Executive Officer, 9PSB, Branka Mracajac has emphasized the need to pay close attention to content creation as an important factor in driving and accelerating financial inclusion in the country, stating that it is capable of enhancing the future of digital banking in the long-term.
Mracajac made this assertion, while presenting a keynote address, themed “Content Creationand Financial Inclusion; The Future of Digital Banking” at the Tech Summit Ogun 2022, which held at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library Abeokuta, Ogun State on Thursday, February 17, 2022.
According to her, while there were ongoing efforts to support the country’s financial inclusion drive, a lot more rested on formulating tailored strategies that address specific needs. “Providing access to the banking agents and touch points, across the country is happening as we speak; payment service banks, microfinance banks, and FinTech companies are all working on this. But will this be enough? Will the access to digital banks change the mindset of Nigerians in rural areas of the country and be enough to drive the transition from cash to cashless society?” she questioned.
Proffering the way forward, Mracajac stressed the need to provide financial literacy through content that spoke to an average Nigerian in unserved rural areas of the country, stating that financial inclusion was a process, not just a point in time and space that we wanted to reach.
She added that, developing content that spoke only to the already banked and mirroring the digital financial habits of those who were fully included and heavily banked, would not help to keep the newly on-boarded in the system long-term. She stated: “While creating and delivering the content for financial inclusion, we need to have in mind the needs of its beneficiaries, the targeted end-users of the financial services who are currently underserved and the only sustainable way is that we join our forces and create the content – apps and services that will address the specific needs of a farmer in Benue, market women in Onitsha, trader in Kano, fisherman in Delta, and the woman selling ofada rice in Ogun State”.
Speaking further, she noted that, to drive the offline individuals and MSMEs from cash to cashless, from analog to digital and from informal to formal, content creators needed to focus on two major goals; one, to deliver relevant and on-point digital financial literacy content, educating people about the principles, ways, modules, and benefits of banking. The second one, she stated, wa needed for sustainable Financial inclusion: delivery of digital banking services that were a reflection of the lifestyle of the currently unbanked and underserved population.
She called on all stakeholders within the financial ecosystem, including content creators to work collectively to develop and implement a digital content strategy for the unbanked to move the financial inclusion needle and ultimately advance the economy, society and improve life of every Nigerian.
In his own keynote address, titled “Disruptive Innovation: Production and Distribution of Creative Content, the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Professor Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, who was represented by the Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian Communications Satellite Limited (NigComSat), Dr. Abimbola Alale remarked that the quality of creatives and start-ups that Nigeria had produced was a testament to the potential of the ecosystem, and as such the ministry would continue to support the tech and creative entrepreneurs to play their part in developing Nigeria’s digital economy.
The Tech Summit Ogun is an annual convergence of Tech disruptors, innovators, startups, organizations and technology enthusiast in Ogun State, aimed at spurring technological innovation towards the digital transformation and technological advancement of Ogun State. This year, the summit attracted over 2000 participants, mainly the youths and start-ups.