TANZANIA Commercial Bank (TCB) plans to expand its market outreach by recruiting more banking agents with the short-term target of increasing their number to over 10,000. The lender said currently TCB has over 3,500 agents across Tanzania who are decisive factor in driving the bank's financial inclusion agenda.
The new agents' number revelation was made early this week in Dar es Salaam at the event to relaunch TCB partnership with Standard Chartered Bank Tanzania, which enhances their collaboration to serve the country.
"Financial inclusion is a key aspect of our operational strategy and through our over 3,500 agents we have been able to take banking services close to where people live and do business. In the next three years, we plan to increase the number of agents to more than 10,000," TCB's Director of Technology and Operations, Mr Jema Msuya, explained after signing of the relaunch agreement on Monday.
Speaking earlier on the development, the Chief Executive Officer of TCB, Mr Sabasaba Moshingi, said the enhanced partnership between TCB and Standard Chartered will be a mutual beneficial relationship for the two banks and their customers.
Under the new arrangement, he explained, Standard Chartered Bank customers will now have access to TCB's extensive branch network of more than 80 fully outlets across Tanzania and agents. Initially the partnership was available in Mbeya, Tabora, Kagera and Dodoma regions.
"Our bank has 48 branches, 36 mini-branches and over 3,500 banking agents countrywide. Our partnership with Standard Chartered Bank will also enable some of our customers to make business transactions within Standard Chartered Bank hence increasing business transactions between both banks," he noted.
Principally, the two lenders' strategic partnership allows Standard Chartered Bank customers to be served through the TCB system where it has no physical presence. Mr Moshingi said that since running physical branches is expensive, the collaboration enables Standard Chartered Bank to cost effectively address operational shortcoming.
He added that TCB also benefits from the setup in terms of increased international exposure by leveraging Standard Chartered Bank's superior positioning in global markets. According to him, the partnership has huge business potential for the two banks and their customers.
"Today, we are resigning and revamping the partnership with Standard Chartered Bank signed six years ago. The partnership is important because Standard Chartered Bank has a limited branch network and it is based on financial considerations. We look forward to its flourishment," Mr Moshingi stated.
Currently Standard Chartered Bank, which has a presence in 60 of the world's most dynamic markets, and operates in a further 85, has only three branches in the country that are in Dar es Salaam, Arusha and Mwanza. Its Chief Executive Officer Sanjay Rughani said the purpose of their bank is to partner and connect people to prosperity through which it supports the government's development agenda.
"Standard Chartered Bank is keen on forming strategic partnerships that promote our customers experience and extend value to our customers. Through this enhanced partnership, we have opportunity to serve our customers better in additional 19 regions with Tanzania Commercial Bank footprints where we had no physical presence," he noted.
With the enhanced partnership, Standard Chartered Bank customers will now be served in over 20 regions including Arusha, Manyara, Kagera, Dodoma, Dar es Salaam, Iringa, Shinyanga, Kigoma, Mwanza, Lindi, Mbeya, Morogoro, Kilimanjaro, Mtwara, Njombe, Singida, Ruvuma, Rukwa, Tabora, Tanga and Zanzibar.