It was the last Sunday in October, around noon, Jaime Loor arrived at the Daviana minimarket, on the main road of Sauces 3, to buy several products from his neighbor César León, who has also been his ‘banker’ for two years.
The trust between the two is noted and Loor pays through his neighbor for electricity, water, cable TV reloads and even withdraws money and deposits in his account through Banco del Barrio, a Bank service that began ten years ago, in 2008 from Banco de Guayaquil.
Banco Pichincha and Banco del Pacífico also offer this type of service with which banks approach neighborhoods, such as Tu Vecino and Tu Banco Banco Aquí, which began in 2012 and 2010, respectively.
León says that having an ‘agency’ in your business is an aid for the sector, because your neighbors pay their bills without moving from their neighborhood and quickly; and for the bank, which grows in transactions, which in its minimarket reach up to 50 per day.
There are currently 4,649 Banks of the District in 24 provinces of the country, with a presence in 218 of 221 cantons, with more than 15 million transactions carried out, according to the bank.
“The project has positively transformed the lives of customers and neighborhood bankers, who have seen their sales grow by up to 50% after the implementation of this new service in their businesses,” the bank said.
Meanwhile, Tu Vecino de Banco Pichincha has 8,859 bank correspondents, with the province of Pichincha having the most affiliated locations with 1,910, said Abel Castillo, director of the bank.
He commented that an average of 205,892 transactions per day is recorded. In the south of Guayaquil, Mercedes Armijos, owner of Comercial Doña Mechita, has been “Your Neighbor” for more than five years.
She is considered a banker, since she helps her neighbors to carry out their transactions and even pays Human Development Bonds to the elderly. “At my age (54 years old), I was going to think I could handle that little machine and do everything I do,” said Armijos excitedly, who does not keep track of the transactions she makes per day, but she does present one month per month.
$ 100 and $ 140, because for each transaction you get $ 0.02 to $ 0.03; and he even remembered that she once managed to earn up to $ 178.
Armijos also offers Tu Banco Banco Here for three months and started the procedures to be a Banco del Barrio operator. “In the neighborhood there was one of those in a pharmacy, but three months ago they removed it and I’m asking to be put here, because people already know me,” she said.
Your Banco Banco Here generates a million transactions per month at the national level, according to Banco del Pacífico, and for the next year they plan to have a growth of at least 30% of transactions by having a greater number of financial transactions and collection, as well as the offer of microcredits for the informal segment.
In the local shops
Among the services that can be accessed are: withdrawals and deposits in cash, collection of bonuses, payment of services, cellular and television top-ups, balances and movements consultation, payment of credits, financial products: withdrawal of money sent from the abroad (remittances and national transfers), vehicular registration, summons and alimony. (I)