Cash recycling machines on the rise

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Banks are installing cash recycling machines at a faster pace as part of their effort to offer customers deposit and cash withdrawal services on the same platform.

This helps customers reduce branch dependency and gives them more banking space.

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The cash-recycling machines are making cash deposit machines obsolete, as the latter only allow cash deposits, and replacing automated teller machines (ATMs) that only allow cash withdrawals.

A cash recycling machine accepts cash, counts bills, authenticates them and credits accounts in real time, saving banks the manual labor required to provide the service. The technology also allows users to deposit and transfer cash to others’ accounts.

A cash recycling kiosk helps customers avoid queuing in front of branches to settle transactions at cash counters as this type of facility is offered by the technology.

Banks in Bangladesh have started installing cash recycling machines from 2017.

The number of machines stood at 1,261 in January this year, up 59 percent from a year earlier, data from Bangladesh Bank showed.

Total transactions via cash recycling machines increased by 97 percent year-on-year to 3,745k in January this year. Compared to December, transactions in January increased by 13 percent.

Cash recycling machines help banks manage cash efficiently as the deposited banknotes can be used to withdraw funds from customers. As a result, banks do not have to frequently throw cash into the cash recycling machines.

This means that the method helps lenders reduce their costs by offering multiple services to customers through a single platform.

The tool gained increasing prominence during the coronavirus pandemic as banks discouraged customers from engaging in branch-run banking.

The number of cash recycling machines will increase many times over the next few years as many banks have taken initiatives to set up the digital tool.

Syed Mahbubur Rahman, chief executive of Mutual Trust Bank, said his bank has recently started to focus on setting up cash-recycling machines given the potential of these digital means.

The private bank has deployed more than 20 cash recycling machines and will install more machines in the coming days, he said.

Although the installment rate of a cash recycling machine is higher than that of an ATM, the convenience of the latest technology is outstanding as it offers many services like a branch, he said.

This encourages banks to do branchless banking because customers can withdraw and deposit funds simultaneously through cash-recycling machines, Rahman said.

“We plan to install more cash recycling machines in the coming days,” he said.

The coronavirus pandemic has given a major boost to the popularization of industry-less banking based on the various technology-driven means, a BB official said.

Cash recycling machines are one of the potential tools since customers don’t have to go to the branch to withdraw or deposit money from banks, he said.

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