GTBank has launched everything platform, Habari, and that is part of the grand strategy which I noted many months ago. Quoting from a speech given by the bank’s CEO, I extracted the grand vision of this category-king institution:
To “create a platform and partner anybody who has a service to offer. So that if as a customer, one comes into our ecosystem, you can do just anything. You could do your banking business, buy your tickets, insurance, travel; if you wanted a 10-day pay day loan, you can do it. So, really we want you to come into our ecosystem, maybe five times a day to do different things other than banking.”
The platform will provide services on music, bill payment, shopping, lifestyle contents and more. Yes, it is designed to offer users direct access to the largest catalogue of local and foreign music online, a seamless shopping experience and an exciting way to connect with friends, amongst other features. In a statement announcing Habari, the CEO returned to the same core:
He [GTBANK CEO] further stated that “Habari is not a mobile banking application; it is the start of our journey towards building a platform that connects our customers to everything that they need, and which continues to evolve with their lifestyle. We are excited about this journey and we are confident that our customers will see in Habari a simple, smart and exciting digital experience that adds value to their lives, every day.”
GTBank is following the duality element construct which notes that great digital products must have platform-features. Yes, even banking products and services must have platform components. It may make the local banking giant lose an identity but do not worry: the banking service providers of the future may not be seen as banks because what banks do today would be commoditized. Simply, the game would be played in anywhere people can get service especially at the consumer/retail banking level.
The full press release below.
Built around the everyday lives of customers, Habari is the first mobile platform in Nigeria created by a financial institution that focuses on enabling people’s needs and lifestyles rather than providing a limited bouquet of regular banking products. The mobile application is open and free for all to download, does not require mobile banking details and offers a wide range of services, all of which are accessible to anyone regardless of where they choose to bank. Habari is also very simple to use and is designed with a clean user interface as well as a seamless navigation experience that ensures everything, from the music to listen to, to the bills to pay, are just two clicks away.
Among the exciting services available on Habari are its catalogue of local and foreign music, the largest ever in Nigeria, carefully curated videos that range from short engaging self-help kits to captivating full-length movies, and books that cut across all literary genres. Habari also offers an end-to-end shopping experience that allows users buy goods and services directly from over 10,000 small businesses. On Habari users can also shake their phones to find and connect with friends, split bills, transfer and receive funds as well as pay for utilities, subscriptions and other services.
Commenting on the launch of Habari, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Guaranty Trust Bank plc, Mr Segun Agbaje, said; “By reimagining the role of banking and driving innovation in how we serve customers, we have built a platform that is less about us as bank and more about our customers and everything they need to enable their lifestyle.”
He further stated that “Habari is not a mobile banking application; it is the start of our journey towards building a platform that connects our customers to everything that they need, and which continues to evolve with their lifestyle. We are excited about this journey and we are confident that our customers will see in Habari a simple, smart and exciting digital experience that adds value to their lives, every day.”