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RCBC spotlights Mindanao MSMEs’ role in Financial Inclusion

DAVAO CITY, PHILIPPINES – Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC) emphasized the crucial role played by partner micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) from Mindanao in achieving the shared goal of financial inclusion, during the RCBC ATM Go Gawad Kabalikat sa Negosyo 2024 Sales Rally and Regional Awards held on April 5, 2024, at the Davao Convention and Trade Center in Davao City, Davao Del Sur.

RCBC ATM Go recognized its Top 10 merchant partners, totaling 60 MSMEs from Mindanao, as champions of the bank’s mission to make digital banking services accessible to Filipinos in low-income, remote, and rural areas. The collaborative efforts between partner merchants and RCBC resulted in an impressive coverage rate of 81% of municipalities, 100% of cities, and 100% of provinces nationwide, generating over 813,000 transactions in Mindanao alone through RCBC ATM Go’s grassroots-oriented and bank-agnostic digital solution.

The strong partnerships established between MSMEs and RCBC were instrumental in connecting the entire Mindanao region, including geographically isolated areas like Lake Sebu in South Cotabato and Turtle Island in Tawi-Tawi, to major economic hubs such as Metro Manila and Metro Cebu. With RCBC ATM Go set to accept internationally registered credit and debit cards soon, along with integrated remittance services, Mindanaoan towns and cities are poised to become hyper-connected to the global digital economy, creating more livelihood and business opportunities.

RCBC has been collaborating with MSMEs since the inception of RCBC ATM Go, providing additional income for enterprises, leveraging their social trust within communities, and empowering them to advocate for digital finance and financial literacy.

Engr. Randy B. Corro, Acting Supervising Cooperative Development Specialist at CDA Region 11, praised RCBC’s generosity in recognizing top performers across provinces and nationwide through events like Gawad Kabalikat sa Negosyo 2024.The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) also commended RCBC for enhancing opportunities for MSMEs and urged more business owners to embrace digital finance.

RCBC introduced new features and capabilities of RCBC ATM Go, including the acceptance of internationally-registered credit and debit cards, activation of key partners as digital lending agents, expansion of billers in the payment section, cash transfers, QR code-based cash outs, and opening bank accounts through ATM Go terminals.These expanded services position RCBC ATM Go as a robust tool bridging rural and remote communities with the global fintech and finance ecosystem, aiming to provide economic opportunities, foster business growth, and accelerate digitalization. This initiative aims to narrow the gap between MSMEs and large businesses, empowering merchants with additional revenue sources and attracting more MSMEs to embrace digital finance.

“Sobrang laking tulong ng ATM Go sa income namin,” awardee Everlyn Sabandon of Digitindahan Travel & Tours shared about her experience. “Dati, konti lang capital. Ngayon, dahil sa ATM Go, mabilis ma-roll out yung pera po. Ang sarap sa pakiramdam na  kaya pala. Na medyo minsan kinakapos tayo pero nagagawaan ng paraan dahil naiikot namin ung pera. Nakakatulong din sa community namin.” (ATM GO has been such a huge help for our income. Before, we had little capital. Now, because of ATM Go, the rollout of money is faster. It’s such a wonderful feeling to know that it is possible and that there is always a way. ATM Go also helps our community).

RCBC’s Executive Vice President and Chief of Innovations and Inclusion Officer, Lito Villanueva, expressed gratitude to the champion merchants for their contribution to the bank’s financial inclusion efforts. He described RCBC ATM Go as a groundbreaking “phygital” (physical-digital) blended banking solution. Amid the pandemic, while other banks were transitioning to digital, RCBC was already ahead, scaling its digital services. Villanueva credited the ATM Go merchants across the country for empowering more Filipinos and ensuring that “No Filipino is Left Behind.”

RCBC ATM Go stands out as one of the most financial inclusion-centric solutions in the country. Around 90% of its transactions occur outside Metro Manila, with over 60% linked to government programs like the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program and payroll disbursements to educators, military, and police personnel. Moreover, it is seen as a potential pillar of the tourism sector due to strategically placed terminals in high-traffic tourist areas where traditional banks and ATMs are scarce.

The RCBC ATM Go Gawad Kabalikat sa Negosyo 2024 Sales Rally spans four locations: Regional Awarding Ceremonies in Laguna, Luzon; Northern Samar, Visayas; Davao City, Mindanao; and a National Awarding at Marquis Events Place in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig. The success of this event is made possible by the invaluable support of RCBC’s partners: Malayan Insurance, RCBC Telemoney, and RCBC Credit Cards, Personal Loans, and Payment Solutions, offering a wide range of Digital Loan Products like RCBC Payday NOW, RCBC Salary Loan NOW, and RCBC Personal Digital Loan.

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