Friday, June 21, 2024

Inside Marumoloa’s daring leap

Half way through the interview, Nixon Marumoloa finds himself fielding a knotty question: “Is Botswana Savings Bank (BSB) a real bank?”

The BSB Chief Executive Officer’s short answer is “yes”.

To a cocked ear, the complete answer is, “yes…. but it’s complicated.”

Marumoloa does not say it in so many words, instead he goes into a lengthy explanation to justify his yes: “There are two types of banks, there are commercial banks and there are statutory banks……The Act allows us to do pretty much anything a commercial bank can do, except for a very few things. We can offer transactional accounts but cannot offer cheque books and forex.”

By the Act, he is referring to the primary legislation which established BSB in 1992 to provide affordable financial services solutions and to mobilize Batswana to save. After more than two decades of apparent doldrums, BSB last year launched a three-year strategy, beating the path to being a fully digital, financially inclusive and a leading Botswana-owned integrated financial service provider.

BSB’s Lesedi 2022-2025 Strategy is a calling card for Marumoloa, who in four weeks, will have chalked up five years at the bank’s helm. It has been half a decade of tinkering with a lot of moving parts. The result is that in two years, he will be able to answer with a straight “yes, BSB is a real bank”, should the question ever arise again.

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