SA firm aims to ease bank queues with automated cash deposit system

CashAccessSys managing director Fred Scherf (left) with Komtel general manager Abdul Malik during the launch of the Automatic Cash Deposit Machine (ACDM) in Nairobi. The system aims to significantly reduce the long queues normally experienced in banking halls on month ends and school opening periods. PHOTO | COURTESY 

By LILIAN OCHIENG’ and ANNE OKUMU
Posted  Wednesday, April 27  2016 at  17:27

Businesses handling large volume of cash in transactions are set to cut the time it takes to validate and sort bank notes with the introduction of a new banking system.

The Automatic Cash Deposit Machine (ACDM), a product of South Africa’s CashAccessSys was introduced into the market mid-April and is expected to significantly reduce long queues at point of sales and in banking halls.

Komtel Kenya, the product’s local distributor, said that it ensures 70 per cent faster transaction processing compared to traditional manual systems. Customers must know their account numbers or have ATM cards to make deposits.

The system has been in use in South Africa, Turkey, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia and Iran, among other countries. It is installed in banking halls, shopping malls and ATM lobbies. Caltex, Shell and Total oil companies use it to carry out secure point of sale transactions.

In Kenya, it could be adopted by supermarkets, mobile money transfer agents and banks. Previous attempts to replicate the system in Kenya failed owing to poor marketing and lack of awareness by banks.

“Your cash dealings are set to become much easier and convenient as the cash deposit machine will be a self-service work station that will allow you to make deposits and payment transactions by cash without having to wait in line for hours or rushing to the bank during working hours”, said Komtel Kenya general manager Abdul Malik.

Besides, the system also detects fake money and issues an advice slip confirming transactions. The system’s inbuilt software is customised to the bank’s requirements.

Institutions in Kenya grapple with losses through robbery attacks as employees ferry money to be banked. CashAccSys managing director Fred Scherf said that in case a bank faces robbery, then the system delays break in as alarm is raised.

This is owing to its tight and encrypted security measures. “This innovation has a bag capacity of up to 15,000 notes, a safe which requires two keys to open and can validate multiple currencies irrespective of their orientation, face up or down,” said Mr Sherf.

“There is a note validator which counts the cash according to denominations of currency but also rejects fraudulent notes.”

According to Habil Olaka, the CEO of the Kenya Bankers Association (KBA), there is a need for financial institutions to improve systems and continuously engage customers, even as new technology emerge.

His caution is informed by bank-related fraud running into billions of shillings. Deloitte, a consultancy firm puts the figure at Sh4.06 billion, a sum backed by the 2015 Kenya Cyber Security report.

Retailers are among users prone to fraud; Nakumatt estimates transaction fraud in the retail business at Sh3 billion annually.

This new teller machine innovation, presents a sophisticated platform with highly encrypted data that could be the answer to constant transaction fraud that has riddled the Kenyan industry.

As the system is embraced locally, customers, analysts and financial institution wait to see if the new technology will shield retailers and bankers from losing billions from crooks at their points of sale.