First Bank Microfinance Bank Limited, with 23 branches in Lagos, seeks to extend its operations to other states in the country, especially Ibadan, Oyo State and Abuja FCT among others. This decision was made as a response to the demands of people living outside of Lagos for First Bank Microfinance Bank to be set up in other areas.
Pauline Nsa, the managing director, FBN MFB said in an interview, “We do not want to be setting up branches because of the cost, so we are looking at using more of technology to expand. That is not to say we will not have physical branches; so, with our national license and enhanced capital we are ready to begin setting up some branches in places like Ibadan and Abuja.”
The bank’s strategy will be different as it will set up as many small branches as one branch, which will take care of small shops around the location. In addition, it will leverage on Firstmonie, an initiative of FirstBank of Nigeria for money transfers.
NSA responded to the measures driving the microfinance bank’s growth, “Basically, a large percentage is hinged on the type of operators and what they are doing. The quality of staff has helped also. Secondly, the brand loyalty of the Group, FirstBank, has been in operation for a long time and now we are talking about FBN Holding Company. This is a brand that has been tested and trusted by a lot of people, and that confidence has made it possible for us to attract deposits. The more deposits you have the cheaper the funding and our capital has been sufficient.”