First Bank of Nigeria has launched chat banking channel on WhatsApp in collaboration with Clickatell’s Transact division in a bid to drive financial inclusion.

Through this chat application, the bank’s customers can carry out regular banking operations and digital product purchases.

All the customers can start chat banking by adding First Bank’s published WhatsApp phone number or a direct link access the First Bank’s ‘Verified’ profile.

Through Whatsapp, First Bank customers can initiate account balance checks, transfers and payments as well as purchase various digital products and services offered by the bank.

First Bank of Nigeria e-business group head Chuma Ezirim said: “Customers’ expectations are constantly changing and it’s our duty as a customer-focused bank to ensure that our customers are provided with the means to initiate or carry out banking services through any channel they desire.

“We are constantly seeking new ways and opportunities to meet customers at their preferred touch points and we understand our customers are actively engaged on WhatsApp.”

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The initiative utilises Clickatell Transact’s bank-grade platform that enables swift implementation of changes to bank offerings without the requirement for professional services, thereby reducing turnaround times.

The launch of First Bank of Nigeria’s chat banking on WhatsApp represents the third large-scale deployment by Clickatell in the African market in the last one month.

Clickatell Transact Division managing director Jeppe Dorff said: “We are very excited to be working with the team from First Bank of Nigeria who, in record time, implemented a complex user experience, soft launched and managed to improve on the already exceptional services that First Bank offers its customers.”