The Huawei Intelligent Finance Summit for Africa 2023 has just ended in South Africa, and Africa’s technology press is reporting on the unveiling of what Huawei calls its Non-Stop Banking initiative.
The initiative was launched at the event in Cape Town, where the company said it plans to facilitate ‘a digital future of non-stop services, non-stop development, and non-stop innovation’. It also called for increased co-operation between the technology and banking industries to facilitate innovation in financial services across Africa.
Of course, highlighting the likelihood of exponential growth in spending on technology by the banking sector is nothing new. Nor is the argument that artificial intelligence, big data analytics and the cloud will see the largest investment. Banks have clear incentives to automate, digitise, and become more data-driven and intelligent, assuming, as Huawei points out, that digital investments will reduce operational costs, allow the development of new products, and enhance relationships with customers, resulting in increased revenues.
But what about Africa? Well, Jason Cao, CEO of Huawei Global Digital Finance, quoted by ITWeb Africa, said: “Huawei is dedicated to helping its African financial customers address challenges and accelerate changes across six fields: shifting from transaction to digital engagement; cloud-native and agile businesses; data democratisation; secure and reliable infrastructure; hybrid multi-cloud and Lego-style modular services; and automated and predictable operation.”
In Africa, he added, there’s an even greater imperative for banks to embrace digitisation, as it allows for greater financial inclusion.
An audience that included key industry opinion leaders, as well as executives from major banks across Africa, heard this and will no doubt be keen to know more. It will therefore be interesting to see how and whether the Non-Stop Banking initiative translates into a detailed strategy.