Telecom provider MTN Rwanda said it has partnered with KCB, RSwitch and I&M Bank to provide and improve consumers’ access to financial services in Rwanda.

The company said the multi-partnership deal is designed to cater to both the banked and the unbanked people in the country by offering basic banking services such as money transfer and withdrawal to MTN Mobile Money subscribers, expand financial inclusion and promote a cashless economy in Rwanda.

This service will enable customers to access their banking services through the Mobile Money platform at their own convenience.

MTN Mobile Money subscribers can access funds from their Mobile Money and KCB bank accounts or withdraw money from I&M ATMs and other RSwitch-connected ATMs using their Mobile Money wallets without using a bank card to initiate the transaction.

MTN is expected to get into similar partnerships with other financial institutions in the months to come.

Registered customers will be able to access the bank integration services on their Mobile Money wallet device by simply dialing numbers (*182#, *) and then choosing Bank Services from the Mobile Money menu and follow the prompts.

However, to withdraw money from an ATM, the customer will first have to get a withdrawal code by dialing *182# > Banking Services > ATM and follow the prompts. The user will receive the four-digit code by SMS which he or she will enter when making a withdrawal at the ATM.

Speaking about the new partnership, Innocent Muhizi, I&M head of IT and transactional banking services, said I&M Bank is “thrilled to be partnering with a great institution in the efforts of reaching more Rwandans that have hitherto had limited access to these transaction services either by proximity or by the inevitable limitation of agency operational hours. We believe that the new services will create the much needed bridge to formal financial services while offering unmatched convenience for mobile money users. At I&M Bank, we are committed to continue championing innovation.”

With the new service, the risks of physically handling money are significantly reduced by creating efficient ways of paying for goods, services and bills at any time of the day, without having to be physically present.

“Being able to access your Mobile Money through ATMs or Bank Integration services opens up a whole new portal of banking, effectively turning your mobile phone into an e-wallet with the convenience of being able to withdraw or transact money 24/7,” Norman Munyampundu, general manager of MTN Business, concluded.

From January to June, the volume of Mobile Money transactions have totaled over 87,000,000,000Rwf. MTN continues to lead Mobile Money in Rwanda with almost 1.7 million registered users since their launch in 2010.