Monday, June 17, 2024

RCBC rolls out ‘phygital’ banking service to serve remote areas

Local bank RCBC has officially launched its “physical-digital” banking service called “Moneybela Barangayan Banking” at the RCBC Plaza in Makati City.

Photo shows RCBC and government officials during the launch

The initiative puts it in direct competition with BPI’s microfinance arm, BanKo, which has the same phygital model and whose “lite” branches are also located in the provinces and remote communities.

Like BPI’s BanKo, RCBC said it will employ Moneybela BES (Banking Experience Support) agents who will go to communities where banks and other financial services are not commonly accessible. It was piloted in Davao City in early September this year.

Aside from going around various communities nationwide to directly serve unbanked Filipinos, Moneybela electric tricycles will also provide financial literacy and agent banking services in public transport terminals, public markets, schools, barangay halls, and health centers to make it accessible to as many people as possible.

RCBC ATM Go merchant partners in all 81 provinces in the country would also serve as Moneybele BES agents that will visit hard-to-reach areas to enable more Filipinos to have access to financial services.

RCBC executive vice president and chief innovation and inclusion officer Lito Villanueva pointed out that Moneybela gives underserved and unbanked Filipinos access to the same financial services offered by physical banks, such as basic deposit account creation, bill payments, e-load, cash in or cash out, micro insurance, and telemedicine purchase via DiskarTech.

“RCBC is excited to join the government in advancing a digitally and financially inclusive future. While these digital experiences revolutionized banking, a huge segment of our society relies on human connection. MoneyBela cuts across innovation, accessibility, and practicality. A service that passes the wheels of the future from banks to every Filipino in hard-to-reach areas,” said Villanueva.

Meanwhile, RCBC president and CEO Eugene S. Acevedo highlighted the bank’s hope to contribute to a future where all Filipinos are financially included.

“A keyword in the name of our program — manibela, or the car’s steering wheel – serves as the main inspiration of RCBC’s innovations. Just like a manibela, we are optimistic to steer Filipinos’ lives toward a direction that is empowering, inclusive, and equal for all. Where are we heading? Towards a financially-inclusive Philippines, and as we take our journey, we need to make sure that no one is left behind,” Acevedo said.

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