TNM plc chief executive officer Michiel Buitelaar says due to digital transformation, commercial banks may have to do away with brick and mortar to serve their customers in future.
Presenting a paper on Digital Transformation in Consumer Industries at the Fifth Bankers Conference 2020 in Blantyre on Thursday, he gave an example of a bank called Knab in The Netherlands, which has no branches and buildings but offers superb services to its customers through digital platforms.
Said Buitelaar: “I used to work for an old-style financial institution in my home country. It created a new bank called Knab, it has no branches or buildings but it gives excellent service to its customers.
“With the digital transformation, this can also happen here in Malawi, I am not saying it will happen now, but there will be a time that this will happen.”
He said service companies can offer personalised offers to customers through digital platforms and appealed to local service providers to embrace this.
Speaking when opening the conference, Reserve Bank of Malawi Governor Wilson Banda bemoaned the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and thanked banks for standing with RBM to provide relief to customers and businesses during the difficult time.
“The banking sector is pivotal in driving economic recovery and securing future stability by providing finance,” he said.
Buitelaar said the path the banks will take will inform the growth trajectory and adaptability of “our economy to future shocks which are certain to come and that future is now”.