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Banks spend millions on ‘beauty treatment

Business Reporter
STANDARD Chartered Bank Zimbabwe has invested US$9 million on refurbishing nine of its 21 branches and revamping its digital banking platform across the country.

The work will reduce excess space by creating lean and cost-effective branches with more emphasis on digital service for the bank that opened its doors in Zimbabwe in 1892.

An estimated US$1,8 million has been used to complete renovations of select branches in Harare, Gweru and Bulawayo. Branches in Mutare, Kadoma, Kwekwe, Bindura, Chiredzi, Victoria Falls, Masvingo, Africa Unity Square and Marondera are being spruced up.

Standard Chartered head of corporate affairs, brand and marketing Ms Lillian Hapanyengwi told The Sunday Mail Business last week that the financial institution was making the interventions to improve convenience for its clients.

“This year, we will be spending a total of US$9 million on all our projects. We are doing branch refurbishments and driving digital migration for the convenience of our clients to transact from anywhere,” said Ms Hapanyengwi.

At the launch of the refurbished Robert Mugabe branch in Bulawayo last month, the bank’s CEO Mr Ralph Watungwa said the investments were indicative of Standard Chartered’s long-term commitment to Zimbabwe.

“We are here for our customers are also here for progress. This is why we continuously strive to bring innovative solutions to meet our customers’ evolving needs,” he said.

Similarly, FBC Bank is refurbishing 13 branches across Zimbabwe to freshen its look and upgrade facilities to global standards. This involves installing world-class granite façade and quality furniture at a total cost of about US$3 million.

FBC group spokesperson Ms Priscilla Sadomba said sprucing up facilities would create a modern banking environment.

“It’s an ongoing process. We are still refurbishing some of our branches to deliver top-drawer services to customers in a modern banking environment. The revamped branches’ aesthetic outlook is giving a fresher, modern and more inviting look to meet the modern international banking standards.

“This gives surety to customers in terms of how committed the bank is concerned in improving the standards of their customers,” said Ms Sadomba.

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