Standard Bank goes 99% digital during pandemic

Date: Jan 24, 2022

Standard Bank Group Ltd said 99% of its transaction volumes in South Africa are now cashless, a trend that has helped the continent’s largest lender by assets to cut costs.

Standard Bank, which dates back to 1862, is seeking to add at least 10 million customers by 2025, and sees technology firms such as Amazon, Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and Uber Technologies Inc. as its biggest competition within Africa.  

“It’s extraordinary,” Standard Bank’s Chief Executive Sim Tshabalala said in an interview with Bloomberg News Editor-in-Chief, Emeritus Matthew Winkler, at the Africa Business Media Innovators Conversation.  

What we’ve seen is an incredible shift to electronic ways of doing things.” 

The pandemic and the ensuing lockdown across the continent coaxed Standard Bank’s customers into switching to digital banking.

A tech-savvy youth population in Africa, where many countries often lack financial infrastructure, accelerated the process.

The Johannesburg-based company has been cutting its branches and even floor space at its offices to help cut expenses.

Outside Africa’s most-industrialised nation, digital transactions account for 95% of the bank’s volume, according to Tshabalala.

The transformation of consumer preferences has placed Africa ahead of more developed economies and major emerging markets.



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