9PSB Champions Empowerment: Offering Agent Banking Opportunities to Women Entrepreneurs and SME Owners

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At the 2024 South-West Women Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Emerging Market Summit and Expo held at Lagos State Co-operative Federation (LASCOFED), 9 Payment Service Bank (9PSB), Nigeria’s digital payment service bank, reaffirmed its commitment to supporting Nigerian women entrepreneurs and Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs) through its agent banking business opportunities. The focus was on enhancing their revenue streams and elevating their standard of living.

The event, themed “Women Entrepreneur as Catalyst for Sustainable Development and Economic Growth,” aimed to empower over 500 women participants with entrepreneurship skills and facilitate market linkages for economic growth. Attendees included women entrepreneurs and SME owners from the South-West region, known for their impactful contributions to society.

During the event, Kunle Isiaka, representing Branka Mracajac, the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of 9 Payment Service Bank, applauded the resilience and significant contributions of women to their communities through various initiatives and businesses.

‘’I am indeed very thrilled to see these amazons who have been breaking all barriers without limitation in all strata of the society, women are truly the bedrock of the society, when a woman is trained, a nation is of course trained, we cannot over emphasize the need for the women the be financially included, empowered, and given the required support to thrive. It is understood that a reasonable number of the women folks lack the basic financial knowledge, and many are financially excluded from the formal financial system, this has impacted to an extend their means of doing business,” he said.

According to a report by EFInA, approximately thirty-eight million (36%) Nigerian adults lack access to a bank account, despite the majority owning phones. The report highlights that four out of every 10 Nigerians face financial exclusion, with females being disproportionately affected. In Lagos State alone, there are at least eight million adults aged 18 and above, many of whom are affluent and engage in daily financial transactions. Among them, 54% are involved in business or trade, with 28% receiving digital payments. Given these statistics, 9 Payment Service Bank is focusing its efforts on addressing and strengthening these areas of financial inclusion.

“In addition, 91% of Lagos adult females are currently financially served, 6% of women in Lagos have access to credit facility, while we focus on the 8% excluded Lagosian, although our license does not permit us yet to give out loans, but we are doing everything possible to ensure we support the women through our agent banking training geared towards women empowerment,” Kunle added.

“As a bank providing services to the banked and underbanked, we dwell on strategic partnership with other players in the industry because we cannot do it all alone, we have the mandate to drive financial inclusion and ensure that every household is financially included. Also, a robust agent network spreading across the country to facilitate financial transactions have been of tremendous progress. We have empowered over 18,000 agents out of which over 45 per cent of them are women. As we make progress in this journey, our Service Location Partners will continue to engage you at your various locations with necessary support to thrive as a merchant in the payment services industry,” he said.

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