March 13th 2017, that’s when CBA announced her Mobile Banking App – the CBA Loop – which is an App that is meant to “eliminate the need for visiting a physical branch for any of the core banking services”. And it offers more than any other traditional banking App out in the market today.
As banks move from traditional banking (which includes website banking, and USSD mobile banking) to Mobile App based banking, the core services they allow are easy access to account balance, generation of mini-statements, payments of bills, payment of goods and services from partner merchants, and deposits and withdrawals (through mobile money like MPESA). A few banks also allow access to limited amounts of loans without the need to visit a branch, and even open a working bank account. As each bank launch their versions of Mobile Apps, they include some value add features to give them an edge over the competition, and it is the same thing that CBA has done to its CBA Loop.
The feature CBA has integrated on its mobile App is the Personal Financial Management tool, which enables customers track, plan and analyse their income against their expenditure on a regular basis, with the analysis is presented using graphical tools for faster interpretation. It also makes it easy for customers to plan for and finance the personal goals and other aspirations for a given period.
“CBA has over the years been associated with transformative innovation that has redefined the financial sector, having been the partner bank when Safaricom launched M-PESA 10 years ago and M-Shwari in November 2012. With Loop, the Kenyan customer is a winner again, with a financial services partner that is concerned about their growth. We aspire to change the nature and manner of conversations that customers have with their bank” said Eric Muriuki, General Manager, New Business Ventures at CBA.
Loop presents a range of transactional features that streamline how customers save and make investments, which fits in well with the government aspiration to inculcate a savings culture among Kenyans. Additionally, customers will be able to use Loop to schedule their utility bills payments, send money, access loans, and pay for goods and services at retail outlets.
The new service was developed over the last two years, based on deep insights gained from the millennial and tech savvy customers. The research delved into the target customers’ habits, their motivations, aspirations, preferences, passions, as well as their pain points in accessing banking services such as loans, deposits and making savings.
Muriuki said, “While the banking sector has effectively catered for its more established customers, it has fallen short in addressing the needs and preferences of millennials and particularly the new age entrepreneur. Square pegs cannot fit into a round hole. Loop is the realization that technological advancements and consumer changing behaviors dictate what and how we offer as financial solutions.”
“Our communication on Loop also does away with the traditional banking jargon, which according to research does not relate well with our target market. In its place we will opt for more relatable terms that will place our customers at the centre of their respective financial journeys,” he added.
Millennials and those who are tech savvy will not have to visit a banking hall to become Loop customers. All they will need is to download the Loop App from the Android or iOS App Store, or alternatively fromhttp://www.cbaloop.com, enter their registration details and collect their cards from specially created retail outlets called Loop Stores. Then they can top up their accounts and start transacting.
The Loop Stores are located conveniently at the City Centre and select malls. They are equipped with Wi-Fi and designed as both work and social spaces, where customers can interact with their financial services partner as well as amongst themselves. We have established six outlets in Nairobi with more planned across the country.