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Friday 14 June 2024

Women Leading the Charge in Fintech and SMEs - 9PSB CEO


9 Payment Service Bank (9PSB), Nigeria's digital payment service bank committed to financial inclusion, has highlighted the strides made by female professionals and entrepreneurs in the fintech sector and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). This recognition was shared at the recent Digital Pay Expo and Exhibition at Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos.

This year's event, themed 'Redefining Payment,' focused on the payment habits of Millennials and Gen Z, the largest generational groups. The discussions emphasised the profound impact these groups have on the payment industry, driving the development of innovative solutions aimed at securing their loyalty and that of the broader market.

Speaking at the session, Women in Fintech, themed, Inclusive Finance for SMEs,  designed to mentor participating female undergraduates across institutions of higher learning in Lagos State, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, 9 Payment Service Bank (9PSB), Branka Mracajac, emphasised that women are making significant breakthroughs in the fintech sector and in Smal and Medium Scale Enterprises in recent years compared to what was obtainable in the past. Although women are still contending with their male counterparts for positions, it is evident that many women are assuming key executive positions in the finance and fintech sectors and other areas of human endeavours. The fintech industry strives to improve the situations occasioned by gender disparity, inclusivity, and financial inclusion to ensure equal growth and opportunities. 

In her words, ‘’Women are founding many business entities and SMEs, it is important to have the right mindset, work hard and put in more efforts to educate yourselves, acquire the right expertise and skills, network and find someone who will inspire you and the opportunities would present itself. We need more prominent professional women leaders in fintech to inspire young girls. We did not have this in my time, but the dynamics have changed. Women should stay focused, connected, and look for opportunities to kick-start their careers’’.

Other female Chief Executive Officers in the fintech sector who also formed part of the session are Ronke Kuye, (Shared Agent Network Expansion Facilities Limited, SANEF, Nigeria); Dr. Markie Idowu (Xpress Payment Solutions Limited); Kemi Okunsanya (Hydrogen, Nigeria), and Yemi Keri (Heckerbella Limited). They also advised the young undergraduates on the need to have mentors who have attained progressive stages of career growth; build good rapport; have improved social capital, utilise the socil media as a means of communication; and communicate their capability, competencies, and experience. In addition, they advised them to offer their best and be ready to add value to prospective organisations they will be employed in. Furthermore, the youngsters were also implored to build and keep relationships with colleagues and ensure leave on a good note whenever they meet people because the future is unpredictable.

Digital Pay Expo is a yearly event designed to bring together industry regulators, fintech top executives, and innovators in the fintech and payment solution space to collaborate and move the industry forward. 

The platform provides a unique opportunity for industry players to discover new innovative cases and technologies that will accelerate the much-needed growth in the fintech ecosystem.

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