App should find favour with customers with a greater appetite for e-commerce
Microfinance entity Access Financial Services (AFS) is moving to capture more market share with the promise of faster loan processing and hassle-free loans using its newly launched ‘My Access’ mobile app.
The online platform, which went live last Friday (March 3), allows AFS customers to use their mobile phones to apply for loans and do business with the organisation from anywhere in the world. The mobile app launch follows an announcement by AFS last year that it intended to make substantial investment in IT infrastructure.
Hugh Campbell, AFS acting chief executive officer, commented: “We’re taking advantage of the technology to make life easier, not just for our customers, but for our employees as well. The small and micro business owners, civil servants and private sector workers we serve rarely have time to stand in long lines or sit inside our branches, no matter how comfortable they are. They need to be working inside their shops and offices, maximising their productivity because time is money. Yes, we will continue to provide that personal touch with our loans officers in branch, but the ‘My Access’ app provides an efficient option for those who have the need for speed.”
App should find favour with customers
The mobile app is an option Campbell believes will find favour with customers who are increasingly more tech savvy, with a greater appetite for e-commerce and more convenient options to doing business. Additionally, with the projected reduction in loan processing time, Campbell is expecting AFS to see growth in its loans portfolio and greater operational efficiency overall.
“This is in keeping with our growth strategy which will move into another phase come the start of the new financial year in April. We see tremendous opportunities in the market and recognise the need to create the tools that will enable us to tap into them in a bigger way,” the acting CEO explained.
AFS offers a wide range of loan products, each tailored to the needs of business operators at the different growth stages of their business. With loan amounts starting as low as $10,000, micro and small business owners have access to funding to purchase goods, replenish stock and to buy equipment for entrepreneurs like shopkeepers, vendors, hairdressers, barbers and farmers.
AFS recently received a triple B rating from regional credit ratings agency Caribbean Information and Credit Rating Services (CariCRIS), described by analysts as “adequate” and an indication that the entity was on a growth path.
With total assets of J$6.31 billion as at September 30, 2022, AFS is among the leading lenders in the microfinance sector and the first to receive a license to operate from the Bank of Jamaica under new licensing requirements in 2022.