Original Post by Komfie Manalo as featured in Daily Tribune
Paper money is unsanitary, and now, more than ever, with COVID-19 inching its way to people’s hands, it is posing a serious public health risk, as it is deemed a potential vector of the virus.
This was an example invoked by Genuisto founder and CEO Shane Hermans on Daily Tribune’s “PAIRfect” as a driver to go cashless, which, echoing calls by public health officials, would mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
“Ever since we were children, we have been taught by our parents not to put money in our mouth because they are dirty. And they are right. Those bank notes and coins have changed hands numerous times and we don’t know by whom. We don’t know what surfaces they touched. Germs and bacteria could survive on its surface,” he said.
But that’s just one of the many reasons there’s a constant reiteration about the wholesale adoption of digital banking. Digitization provides banks with a competitive advantage by greatly decreasing costs.
“I think the greatest driver for it is economic performance and improving efficiencies for the country,” he said. “It is secure. I am not exposed. I could pay my bills wherever I am. I am not restricted. It goes above and beyond just the trust and convenience. It gives me my time to do more important things in my life.”
With digital revolution seen to boost the bottom line, do banks still need branches? And is the human teller still a vital component in banking?
“I don’t think brick-and-mortar banks will ever completely disappear. I think it’s an essential part of certain processes within banking to have a physical presence to remain trusted, to be visible to the customers,” he said. “But the reality is that it’s about convenience. It’s about accelerating business and economic growth.”
Why the resistance?
“If you look at the Philippines, most cashless transactions and digital payments are being done in the urban areas. In rural areas it all boils down to education,” he said. “A lot of Filipinos think that their money is not secure (in the cloud), it might be lost, it might be hacked. It’s all about trust. And how do you gain trust? You get familiar. How do you get familiar? You give them knowledge.
You educate them.”
As a fintech enabler, Genuisto ensures the underbanked and unbanked communities’ benefit from financial inclusion and financial education, creating a unique financial ecosystem that enables financial institutions and service providers to connect to communities in a collaborative network, both physical and digital, a next generation financial software.
Genuisto’s strategy combines working closely with global partners to provide solutions for accelerated digital transformation. Through process automation, AI, big data and machine learning, it streamlines its clients’ operations to future-proof their organization.
with Vernon Velasco