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StanChart moves to target tech savvy youth in fresh efforts to win digital banking battle

Standard Chartered has launched first social banking solution in Uganda, the SC Keyboard. (PHOTO/Courtesy)

KAMPALA – Targeting tech savvy young people in the banking market, Standard Charted Uganda limited has introduced ‘SC Keyboard’ social banking solution which allows people to access its services without downloading the bank’s application.

In his remarks before the launch, Mr. Moses Rutahingwa, the StanChart head of retail banking, said the SC Keyboard is an important milestone as the global bank veers towards migrating to digital service.

Mr. Rutahingwa said the platform was designed with clients tastes because it allow users to pay bills, view account balances and transfer money to friends or family through any social or messaging platform, be it WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook, Messenger or traditional SMS’s.

“Today, Standard Charted announces another first banking feature in the Ugandan market. The feature, which is part of the bank’s newly launched full digital bank on Mobile, allows customers to access a variety of financial services from within any social or messaging platform without having to open the banking application,” Rutahingwa said.

He said the keyboard-based banking solution allows clients to transfer money in real-time, pay utility bills and instantly check balances from any social or messaging platform.

The StanChart Head of Retail Banking further noted that the unique digital solution can be configured as the default keyboard on any smartphone, making banking quick and seamless for customers who no longer need to long into their Standard Chartered Mobile App for basic banking service.

“We want out interactions to he simple, intuitive and seamless. We remain committed to leveraging the best technology to make banking more convenient thereby enhancing customer centricity and service delivery,” he added.

Only account holders in the bank will use the feature.

The feature shows how far banks will go in the race to win the digital banking battle. Young people, who spend most of their time on social media, are particularly of interest for these banks.

Standard Chartered and Stanbic banks have both indicated that digital platforms make up more than 80% of their transactions. But to keep the customers, banks are adding features to digital platforms to entice them to stay or enlist more people.

“Less than 20 per cent of the transactions are happening in the branches,” said Rutahigwa.

Audit firm PricewaterhouseCoopers has predicted that by 2020, retail banking will look different from the way it is now because of customer expectations, regulatory requirements, demographics and new competitors serving people without going through the old bank.

This implies banks have to continuously innovate to add more features on their platforms.

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