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FNB Easy Plan paying out R100 mil per month

By Staff Writer

FNB’s EasyPlan branch network is now paying out  more than R100-million a month in loans to low and middle income clients after just two years in operation.

“This time last year we were paying out just over R10 million in loans per month. FNB EasyPlan’s growth confirms that a one size fits all approach is not relevant. Each and every market segment and sub segment thereof require tailor made solutions for growth and sustainability,” says Line Wiid, CEO of FNB Smart Solutions.

The EasyPlan branches are part of FNB Smart Solutions, a focused division in the bank responsible for servicing mainstream customers – customers who earn up to R100 000 per annum. “We opened our first EasyPlan branch eight months after we took a decision to grow our presence in the mainstream market,” she notes.

“We had to overhaul our products on offer for EasyPlan, points of presence, pricing and processes. Importantly we needed to remove cash out of the branch, and today, two years later, we have 120 branches, paying out in excess of R100 million per month and signing up a significant percentage of our banking accounts,” adds Wiid.

Through EasyPlan, FNB is able to offer loans from as little as R250 - opening its doors to consumers who never qualified for formal credit and enabling them to start building their credit profiles so that they can qualify for bigger loans in the future.

According to FNB the EasyPlan business model is based on consumer empowerment and to achieve this, it is using technology to bring electronic based banking to its customers.
“At FNB EasyPlan we are big on self-service channels. The use of electronic based banking such as Advanced ATMs, Cellphone Banking and eWallet has enabled us to absorb the cost as a business and in turn be able to offer our customers true affordable banking,” says Gift Manyanga, CEO of FNB EasyPlan.

Notably, the bank is seeing a significant increase in the use of its Advance ATMs - ATMs with a ‘real time card-less cash-deposit-facility’ which enable customers to deposit cash to pay for rental, municipal and retailers’ accounts at their own convenience. The Advance ATMs are popular with informal traders who deal with large amounts of cash on a daily basis. On average more than 1200 cash deposits are facilitated by each ATM per month (as per end of July 2011).

“A familiar, welcoming, branch environment is essential to attracting the unbanked. In this market providing services in the customer’s home language is an important first step. As our EasyPlan

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