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GCB Bank plans expansion to countries in West Africa

GCB Bank says it plans to expand its operations into the West Africa sub-region, beginning with the English-speaking countries.

The Bank is also exploring with a foreign partner to form a joint venture to provide insurance products.

Speaking at the ‘Facts behind the Figures’ programme on the Ghana Stock Exchange, Mr Ray Anselm Sowah, the Managing Director of the Bank, said more details of the plan would be announced later in the year.

“We are also looking at the sub-region. We have an agenda of moving into various countries and we are prosecuting that agenda. We do hope that we will make investments into other countries and that will inure to the benefit of people to have the opportunity of going out to learn new things and to teach people what they have learnt here,” he told investors, media and brokers on the Exchange.

Mr Sowah said the bank had also decided to diversify and was looking to boost non-funded interest.

In this direction, he said, the bank was converting its subsidiary, called Development Finance Holdings into a full investment bank to be known as GCB Security Limited.

“That subsidiary is going to do all the works in investment banking in this country and compete for business in terms of book running and investments. So, we do hope that we will create another stream of income from that,” Mr Sowah said.

He said in line with GCB’s strategic plan, the bank’s focus was on providing first-class banking solutions to all customers and value to stakeholders as well as meet the everyday needs of the people.

Mr Sowah said the Bank would rely heavily on safe, secure and convenient mobile and digital banking to drive the agenda of bringing banking to the doorstep of the people.

“We want to let people from all walks of life, especially the un-banked to have access to this banking in a way they have never had before. We have a mobile banking wallet, which is coming out shortly and in this there is going to have a refreshing progress,” he said.

The bank will launch its Mobile wallet, Internet Banking with trade solution and mobile application all by July 2019 while its Agency Banking would launch in December 2019.

The banking landscape is changing and competition is no longer restricted to only the banks but clearly the Telcos are in growing ascendancy because they have contemporary stage of hard digital platforms and so they have access to significant pool of money.

Our strategy therefore is to rope this people and transition all of these new entrants on to our digital platform and bring them into the high levels of financial integration by offering a wide range of financial services and opportunities overtime.

“You may look at the Telcos and think that they are in competition but to us, they are potential partners and we are going to use them at different levels of the banking spectrum,” Mr Sowah said.

Mr Socrates Afram, the Deputy Managing Director Finance, said the bank would be aggressive in its approach to digitalization to drive revenue.

Mr Ekow Afedzie, Deputy Managing Director Ghana Stock Exchange, said Information was one of the key drivers of liquidity and encouraged GCB to disclose any price sensitive information, apart from the mandatory disclosures, to the investing public to enable them make inform decisions.

Source: GNA

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