FNB banks the unbanked with mobile units

FNB is introducing a new innovative mobile banking unit designed to extend banking services to unbanked rural communities. Unveiled as another first for South Africa, the bank transformed a shipping container by equipping it with state of the art banking infrastructure such as an ATM, ADT and teller services.

The mobile unit was initially intended for the community of Mutale, Limpopo. However, following the natural disaster at Phumlani Mall in Tembisa, it will be temporarily placed in the area to help residents access banking services.

Lee-Ann van Zyl, CEO of FNB Points of Presence, says “South Africa still has a large section of the population that has limited access to banking facilities and we want to turn this around. The first step for us was to think about an innovative way of delivering a full suite of banking facilities to rural communities in a convenient fashion. We decided to introduce a fully quipped mobile banking unit that caters for transactional banking, teller services, an ATM and an ADT, which enables customers to deposit cheques, prepaid purchases, opening Savings and Investment Accounts and the option to apply for a loan.”

FNB’s new mobile baking unit is a result of the bank’s internal innovation which encourages employees to solve for real-life problems.

“Innovation is a big part of FNB’s ethos and as a business we encourage everyone to play a role in coming up with ideas that not only challenge convention, but address customer needs and increase efficiency”, adds van Zyl

FNB’s mobile banking units are movable, therefore if it is not longer responsive to the banking needs of a particular area it can simply be moved to another location.

“We are consistently looking at ways of making banking accessible to all South Africans. This is evident in our constant review of our footprint and through electronic channels that provide for easy access to banking without having to walk into a branch”, says van Zyl.

This type of mobile unit is the first of its kind from FNB; the bank will continue to assess additional sites where there may be demand for mobile units.