IBM To Manage Technology Assets Of Fidelity Bank

EFFAHFidelity Bank Ghana Limited has chosen IBM, an American multinational techno-logy and consulting corporation, to manage its technology infrastructure and services for the next five years.

The $66-million deal will help the bank deliver advanced customer services and secure its reputation as a dynamic financial services institution in West Africa.

The announcement was made at the US-Africa Business Forum, a part of a three-day Africa summit that has brought together political leaders, officials and business executives in Washington.

Currently one of the largest banks in Ghana, Fidelity is seeking to enhance its operational efficiencies as it embarks on a new strategic direction, developing growth plans and strategies for new markets, products and services.

Fidelity Bank pioneered agency banking in Ghana, contracting third party retail networks called Fidelity Smart Agents to provide services on its behalf, with the objective of offering the full benefits of its services and products to the unbanked and under-banked in the country.

Fidelity Bank was licensed by the Bank of Ghana (BoG) in 2006 and has made tremendous strides in the past seven years to become a Tier1 Bank. The quality of its product offerings and its high professional standards has propelled its franchise into a leading Ghanaian brand. The bank now has a balance sheet of USD $1billion (approx.).

Fidelity Bank’s choice of IBM to manage the administration and governance of its technology assets and operations will further entrench its position as a leading, financial institution in West Africa.

The aim of the technology management services deal is to ensure stability in the bank’s operations nationwide and help drive its projected exponential growth, as it seeks to become one of Ghana’s top three banks in the next five years.

To support the bank’s goals, IBM will combine local and international expertise, including round-the-clock technical support from IBM’s international global delivery centres to ensure the bank achieves cross-channel integration and a seamless customer experience across all its touch-points.

The IBM-managed services will cover a broad spectrum of the bank’s IT functions, including management of its server, security, storage, networks, end user services, branch IT support, ATM infrastructure support and data centre services.

“Our bank enjoys an exceptional reputation that results from the dedication and hard work of our employees and our incomparable products and services,” said Edward Effah, Managing Director, Fidelity Bank.

“In the rapidly changing Ghanaian banking industry, with far more players and competition than ever before, consumers are entitled to expect benchmark service and protection from these unique market challenges. It is my belief that our partnership with IBM will enable us to deliver and exceed these stakeholder expectations.”

The Ghanaian lender earlier chose IBM’s data centre solution for a successful retooling and upgrading of its technology assets.

“The economy is going through a unique phase in its evolution and increasingly we are seeing that the appropriate deployment of technology solutions and services in the nation’s financial services sector will be key to boosting the growth momentum already achieved in the sector and by extension in the macro-economic environment,” said Joe Mensah, Country General Manager, IBM Ghana.

The list of banks around the world turning to IBM for support continues to grow. Whilst 70 per cent of the world’s data is managed on IBM systems, 95 of the top 100 banks worldwide use IBM business or technology services to run their business.

IBM has also announced more than 20 banking deals throughout Africa over the last five years, with Kenyan, Ghanaian, Nigerian and Congolese banks turning to IBM for world-class IT solutions.

A robust IT operating environment managed by IBM will help Fidelity management concentrate on Business Strategy and enable the bank to pursue its aggressive growth strategies.

Fidelity Bank Ghana is a universal bank owned by Ghanaians, foreign individuals and institutional investors, including the Africa Capital LLC, Kagiso Tiso Holdings, Amethis Finance, The Rothschild Group and the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) Ghana, amongst others.

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