Analysts Foresee Single Global Currency in Growing Technology Disruption  

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By Obinna Chima 

Financial and technology analysts have predicted that a single world currency wasimminent given the growing technology disruption in the financial services industry typified by the popularity of blockchain adoption and its offshoots, cryptocurrencies.

Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Precise Financial Systems, Yele Okeremi, and the Lead, Digital and Robotics Practice, Ernst &Young, Nigeria, Akinsope Roberts, gave the prediction recently at the maiden business a.m./GTI Finance and Investment Dialogue held in Lagos.

Speaking on the topic, ‘Technology Disruption in the Financial Services Sector: How Prepared is the Nigerian Market?’ both analysts noted that technology disruption had become the new normal, and that financial services industry would be impacted much more with traditional institutions losing market share to fintech start-ups.

 Okeremi said threat of losing control due to fear of deregulated banking service was why central bank governors have been critical of cryptocurrency, adding that legislation would soon lose its grip on the payment system and be part of the drivers of disruption in financial services with positive consumer experience being the lever.

 He cited how legislation had been trying to keep hold on the technology that would clear cheques instantly in the country – either upcountry or local, and that the Nigeria Interbank Settlement System (NIBSS) has in place a technology that would clear cheques instantly which has been delayed by legislation.

Okeremi, a former head, Systems and Logistics, Ventura Savings and Loans Limited, said digital banking is the future of the banking industry, tracing the rise of fintechs to the realisation by technology companies that they were getting low value from selling their services to the banks and decided to provide such services themselves.

 On his part, Roberts pointed out that over 35 per cent of financial services revenue will be at risk by 2025, and with about 31 million banked Nigerians, the technology start-ups will bring more Nigerians to access financial services.

 “It is obvious that the traditional financial service providers are lagging behind in bringing the more than 150 million unbanked Nigerians into the financial system, which creates the opportunity for fintech to erode their market share,”Roberts added.

 

He noted that apart from technology, customer behaviour influenced by demographics is fast becoming a major disruptive driver.

  “Nigeria’s population is young and young people want service on the go without being physically present at the providers’ offices and digital technology is providing the convergence for companies who can offer different services to meet their needs,” he said.