MTN unveils mobile financial services subsidiary

MTN Nigeria is set to unveil its new subsidiary, Y’ello Digital Financial Service Limited and mobile money services today.

The telco registered the new subsidiary with the Corporate Affairs Commission in 2018 and obtained a super-agent licence from the Central Bank of Nigeria in July.

It was gathered that the super-agent licence would enable the telco to facilitate domestic payments for over 65 million subscribers in Nigeria using phone numbers.

The licence issued on Thursday, July 25, 2019, according to the company, would enable it to join the league of financial technology companies that are accelerating financial inclusion in the country through an agent network.

It was learnt that MTN MoMo agents would offer cash to cash transfer for customers, which could be redeemed using the token generated at another agent location.

The telco had promised to deploy its airtime agents as mobile money agents that would offer financial services to Nigerians, especially the unbanked in remote areas.

“We are pleased with obtaining a super-agent licence from the Central Bank of Nigeria, which will enable us to build an agent network and accelerate the growth of our fintech business,” the Chief Executive Officer, MTN Nigeria, Ferdi Moolman, said in the financial report.

However, the company said it would continue to work towards obtaining a Payment Service Banking licence it applied for in 2018.

MTN said it invested N50m in Y’ello Digital Financial Services Limited in the first half of the year, with respect to the minimum shareholding requirement stipulated by the CBN for a super-agent licence.

MTN, together with Airtel, Globacom, 9mobile and Ntel, had pledged to deepen financial inclusion in 30 months by collectively reaching 90 million Nigerians through the deployment of over one million airtime agents as mobile money agents.

Some of the telecom operators are already offering mobile money services in collaboration with the Deposit Money Banks but they are now seeking to offer financial services independently.

The Payment Service Banks are expected to provide access to additional financial services such as deposits and savings, peer-to-peer payments, merchant payments and utility payments to the Nigerian population.

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