Samoa Commercial Bank Launches SMS, Internet Banking

admin's picture

PM’s for innovation motivated management to improve

By Ilia L. Likou

APIA, Samoa (Samoa Observer, May 13, 2015) – When Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi, launched the Samoa Commercial Bank (S.C.B), he challenged the Bank’s management to be innovative.

Last night, the Bank took another step in response to that challenge when it launched its SMS and Internet Banking Service at its Matafele headquarters.

And present to celebrate the milestone and congratulate the Bank was Prime Minister Tuilaepa, who carried out the first transaction much to the delight of guests, staff and friends of the bank.

S.C.B’s Managing Director, Lemalu Ray Ah Liki, said the launch is a proud achievement for the locally owned bank.

"Since the establishment of S.C.B, we have continued to develop and enhance our electronic banking products for the convenience of the bank's clients," he said.

"After six years of operation, S.C.B decided to extend its services to the card system and sought the services of an overseas company to design a software programme and a switch that would interface with the existing Core Banking System of the Bank.

"Last year, we commenced work on upgrading and enhancing our Core Banking System for more capacity, speed and adding more modules and functionalities. "These now include our Mobile Phone and Internet Banking."

Lemalu said the occasion is an important step in the development of S.C.B, especially its efforts to improve its electronic banking services.

"These additional facilities will enable the clients of the bank to access their account balances at any time online; download bank statements; and transfer funds from one account to another," he said. "The past 12 years have been quite a challenging experience for us as we tried to establish S.C.B and be another player in the banking industry of Samoa."

"We plan to continue to compete aggressively and provide a cost effective service to the community and of course clients of the bank."

Looking back, Lemalu said the Prime Minister’s challenge was motivational.

"In his address, the Honourable Prime Minister challenged and advised the Board and Management to ensure the financial safety and soundness of the Bank through prudent management," Lemalu said.

"While there was courage when S.C.B opened for business, there was a also a feeling of nervousness and perhaps uncertainty of how we would fare in this totally new business experience."

"We had to find funds for our lending operations and clients to lend to."

"Unlike other businesses where sales can pick up immediately, traditional and retail banking relies on how fast loans are extended and depositor funds are acquired."

"This is a gradual process and is dependent on client confidence and support of the new bank. Thus, in the early stage of the S.C.B, monthly expenditure far exceeded monthly income for many months."

"After two months of operation, I called a staff meeting and explained the bank's situation to everyone, illustrating, through the expenditure and the income line graphs the importance of the income curve overtaking the expenditure curve within the first two years of operation."

"This was our target that we needed to achieve if were to succeed in establishing S.C.B."

Lemalu said there were many other challenges.

Fortunately, they have been able to meet and overcome many of these challenges.

Rate this article: 
No votes yet

Add new comment