STANBIC Bank Zimbabwe says it will close its Beitbridge and Chitungwiza branches next month as it adopts a digitisation strategy, which allows clients to conduct transactions and other services online.
The bank will be closing the two branches with effect from March 31, 2020, to pave way for a digitisation strategy, said the bank. Stanbic Bank chief executive, Mr Joshua Tapambgwa, said the digitisation strategy would leave the financial player with a physical footprint of 17 branches across the country.
He said Stanbic Bank views the digitisation drive as a futuristic move necessitated by technological advancements that have taken over the sector worldwide.
“The model we are following has been adopted by many financial and non-financial institutions in other parts of the world but very few in Southern Africa.
“The new banking technologies we are introducing continue to bring ease of banking to our customers, which gives us the confidence to move to the next level of banking,” he said.
Mr Tapambgwa reassured customers with accounts being maintained at these two branches that their accounts will be safely migrated to Southerton and Bulawayo Joshua Nkomo Street branches, with the option of visiting any one of their 17 branches should they need service from physical branch facilities.
“In order to make this strategy a reality, Mr Tapambgwa acknowledged the need for great innovation, which is why the bank has seen it fit to re-deploy staff members from these branches to digital banking innovation-related and sales roles within the bank. All our staff members currently working in these two branches will be redeployed to other departments of the bank, which are driving the digital bank strategy, that way, we retain our talented employees and continue to move our business forward for the benefit of our customers,” he said.
Mr Tapambgwa expressed satisfaction with customer migration towards adopting the digital banking platforms.
The bank’s head of personal and business banking, Mr Patson Mahatchi, has pointed out that the institution was making strides in its journey towards becoming a digital bank for the utmost customer convenience.
“We remain compliant with consumer protection laws as we continue to implement digital technologies set to enhance the customer experience,” he said.
Mr Mahatchi noted that one technological milestone realised last year was the bank’s remote on-boarding functionality, which enables new customer accounts to be opened at the customers’ preferred location, allowing them access to digital banking facilities instantly.