Why African banks are investing in AI

Why African banks are investing in AI

Artificial intelligence (AI) is now firmly in the sights of African banks. From better understanding consumer needs to reducing risk, there are few areas where AI can’t make a key impact on operations.

Christine Wu, Managing Executive, Customer Value Management at Absa Retail and Business Bank, views artificial intelligence (AI) as an important enabler of the journey to a new banking model that is truly responsive to customer needs.

“All areas of the bank’s operations can benefit from AI – from the frontline, where we can make use of smarter profiling and customer interactions that are needs-based and tailored to a customer’s profile, to customer servicing, where we can include clearer and more bespoke solutions to customers before they even ask – such as the automation of repetitive tasks,” says Wu.

AI is often defined as human-like intelligence achieved by machines – any system that “perceives its environment and takes actions that maximise its chance of achieving its goals”. Advanced AI, according to experts, is also capable of learning and problem-solving.

Enthusiastic take-up

AI has been taken up enthusiastically across Africa, although the expert view is that it needs some fine-tuning to adapt to the African social and cultural environment. Still, the potential is as great in the banking landscape as it is in online and mobile transactions.

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