Equity Bank is Closing Some of its ATMs to Encourage Mobile Banking Uptake


Companies deploy multiple strategies to boost profits without spending huge amounts of money, and the newest organization to take on this approach is Equity Bank. Specifically, the banking institution has started closing some of its automated teller machines commonly referred to as ATMs in a bid to encourage users to adopt its mobile banking solution powered by Equitel.

According to Business Daily, Equity Bank has closed 11 ATM lobbies that have multiple ATM points. As stated by the bank’s CEO Mr. James Mwangi, the installation of ATM machines is a cumbersome process that calls for prior capital investment for the machines, as well as securing spaces for the cash dispensing machines. Contrastingly, mobile banking and the provision of financial services to customers via third parties on behalf of the bank has no financial obligations.

Based on the bank’s data, most of its 9.59 million customers prefer their transaction to go through mobile phones, in addition to having access to mobile baking agents in their neck of the woods.

“Last year Equity conducted a survey and the findings were customers prefer self-service digital banking and have a higher preference for convenience in payment platforms and access to loans,” stated Mr. Mwangi.

It is worth noting the bank’s e-banking platform Equitel has made a name for itself based on number of transactions. For instance, the service processed up to 227.4 million transactions by December 2016. Agency banking clocked in 61.9 million transactions, which was followed closely by ATMs that performed 20.4 million transactions. Clearly, this numbers support the bank’s bid to boost Equitel financial platform in a market that is dominated by M-PESA and its associated services.

Equitel Money has 1,727,696 mobile money subscribers who are served by 29,561 agents according to the Communication Authority of Kenya’s (CA) sector statistics report for the third quarter of 2016/17.