Malawi: Standard Bank Launches Unayo - New Service to Tap the Unbanked

16 September 2021

Malawi's leading bankers, Standard Bank on Wednesday moved up the business horizon and launched Unayo, a seemingly excellent services platform with an aim to connect businesses, customers and communities and in the long run provides a single hub for economic activity.

According the bank, this new platform will ensure the facilitation of the easing out of transactions when paying for goods and services, money transfers and disbursements.

Chief Executive for Standard Bank, Phillip Madinga said the innovation aims at redefining the banking sector by creating new frontiers to serve Malawians better and wider but also connect the various ecosystems in the country.

Said Madinga: "Unayo is a revolutionary services platform that enables us solve a range of problems faced by communities when handling their financial needs. By its very name Unayo is Swahili for "You Have It", or Ulinayo in vernacular.

"The solution literally puts the power in Malawians' hands to improve their financial wellbeing and embrace them in a growing and thriving economic ecosystem."

According to Standard Bank, Malawians can register on Unayo in two ways, either as merchant or customer designed for day to day banking services saying that merchants and customers can transact with everyone in Malawi from any mobile network.

The platform allows customers to move money using Cash In and Cash Outs, and pay friends, family and merchants, and Electronic Money Transfers.

Madinga said he was upbeat that the new product, Unayo will revolutionalise the banking industry by tapping the unbanked base.

"With mobile phone operators sharing over 9 million customers, it is the Unayo platform, which will help include the rest of the population into banking mainstream," he said.

The Standard Bank boss, Madinga said, with Unayo, Standard Bank is reiterating that it is part of an ecosystems driver that connects different customers and market players across the spectrum.

He further pointed out that that the bank is simultaneously addressing issues of financial inclusion and job creation through this innovation.

"We are bringing as many Malawians as possible into the banking system via modern technologies. No one should be left behind when it comes to accessing banking services either as a merchant or customer or beneficiary."

In his remarks, Reserve Bank of Malawi Deputy Governor, Grant Kabango, commended Standard Bank for being a driver of change within the economy via modern innovations and technologies.

"Unayo Platform comes as a timely intervention to a sector that is dynamic and in need of new ideas to improve delivery of modern financial services. Currently, only two million of out of the country's total population of 19 million are bank customers meaning penetration is still very low.

"We are convinced that Unayo has come to help in reversing that anomaly by taking banking straight to the people and doing so through modern means," he said.

For one to be on Unayo, all they need is a mobile gadget, mobile number and Personal ID. Registration on USSD is by dialing *247# and follow the prompts. As for the mobile App, one must download Unayo from Apple Store or Play Store and follow the registration guide.

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