Abacus signs Technology Support Agreement with RMFB

Rozgar Micro Finance Bank Limited (RMFB), a wholly owned subsidiary of Ufone GSM, has signed a technology acquisition agreement with AbacusConsulting and Sybase 365, the mobile services arm of SAP AG (NYSE: SAP), for the implementation of an end-to-end branchless banking solution. Mr. Abbas Ali Khan, Partner AbacusConsulting and Mr. Arif Sirhindi, CEO RMFB shook hands over this strategic initiative.

With this project, RMFB aspires to create countrywide cashless, card-less and branchless network. RMFB will be leveraging upon the large scale franchise network, retail outlets and USSD infrastructure of Ufone and PTCL for the success of this initiative. Due to its vast network and intricate channel, this project will provide RFMB a distinct edge over its competitors, and help serve its customers over a much wider landscape. RMFB’s entrance in the Branchless Banking Services sector will create opportunities for bringing unbanked segments of society into the financial network by offering imperative services such as Money Transfer, Bill Payments, and Remittance, etc.

Abbas Ali Khan, Partner AbacusConsulting said, “At Abacus, we fully acknowledge and understand the fact that using a cell phone simply as a means of voice communication and text messaging is grossly under-using its true potential since the world today is becoming a mobile economy with consumers expecting convenient access to transaction channels 24/7. Understanding consumer needs and aligning them with the aim of harnessing the proper usage of mobile technology, Abacus has formed a strategic alliance with Sybase 365, for creating a nationwide cashless, card-less and branchless network.”

Mr. Arif Sirhindi laid emphasis on the statistics which depicted Pakistan as a very inviting market for Financial Sector Solutions. Speaking at the occasion, he said, “In Pakistan alone more than 800,000 branchless banking accounts have been opened so far, with the average number of transactions per day at around 180,000, while the agent network under the branchless banking umbrella has exceeded 20,000 agents. Furthermore, the number of mobile phone users has reached a tele-density of 65.2 percent with 111 million users recorded by Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA). These figures depict that millions of consumers in Pakistan own mobile phones yet lack access to basic banking services”.

“The integration of new branchless mobile banking services into Rozgar Mirco Finance Bank’s current portfolio will further extend the bank’s competitive edge, providing an opportunity for it to tap into a larger pool of potential customers – including some of Pakistan’s approximately 130 million mobile phone users who live in remote rural areas where access to banks, ATMs and the Internet, remains limited,” said Matthew Talbot, senior vice president, mCommerce, of Sybase 365.