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Archie Hesse Grabs Two Fintech Awards

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Archie Hesse Receiving Plaque And Citation At The Ghana Fintech Awards
Archie Hesse receiving plaque and citation at the Ghana Fintech Awards 2023

Chief Executive Officer of Ghana Interbank Payments and Settlements Systems (GhIPSS), Archie Hesse has won two major Fintech industry awards in just two weeks for his outstanding contribution to the digital payments and financials inclusion for nearly two decades. 

The first award was an honorary one dubbed Lifetime Achievement for Financial Inclusion at the 2023 Ghana Fintech Awards, and the second was the Outstanding Digital Payment Technology CEO of the Year at the Ghana Entrepreneurs and Corporate Executives Awards.

The well-deserved honorary award at the 3rd Ghana Fintech Awards jointly organized by the Ghana Fintech and Payments Association and Arkel Limited, came with a plaque and a citation that read in part that the award was in recognition of a lifetime devoted to fostering financial inclusion and innovation in Ghana.

Archie Hesse’s journey with GhIPSS began 17 years ago when he joined as General Manager in charge of Project and Business Development during its formative stages. His pioneering efforts and strategic vision laid the foundation for GhIPSS’s transformative role in reshaping Ghana’s payment systems landscape.

Following his rousing performance and show of leadership and passion for transformative technology, Archie Hesse succeeded Rev. Fred France, the first CEO of GhIPSS, and assumed the role of CEO in 2012.

Under his transformative leadership, GhIPSS implemented ground-breaking payment system infrastructures, including the nationwide domestic acquiring network and card scheme, gh-link, e-zwich, and GhIPSS Instant Pay (GIP), in addition to its cheaque clearing system, direct credit, direct debit and later direct credit near real-time.

As technology evolved and fintech became the main stay of payments, GhIPSS also emerged by building the Mobile Money Interoperability platform, plus GhQR Code, and recently the GhanaPay Mobile Money Wallet, all of which have boosted instant pay across wallets and bank accounts and therefore driving financial inclusion.

These platforms collectively form what Mr. Hesse refers to as “Ghana’s Financial Inclusion Triangle,” which gained high recognition globally when it was all laid out in the first AfricaNenda State of Instant Payments in Africa Report in 2022.

By establishing the Financial Inclusion Triangle and topping it up recently with the GhanaPay Mobile Money Wallet, Archie Hesse and his team at GhIPSS have boosted financial inclusion in Ghana to a reported 90% plus. But he is not stopping there; GhIPSS has recently signed a deal with Visa to start processing Visa Card transactions in Ghana, which promises to further deepen financial inclusion through affordability, and bridge the gap even further. There are plans to sign a similar deal with MasterCard.

Mr. Hesse’s remarkable contributions stand as a testament to his unparalleled passion, integrity, and commitment to the growth and development of payment systems in Ghana and beyond. Through his exemplary leadership at GhIPSS, he has not only shaped the present but also paved the way for a more inclusive and prosperous future for generations to come.

It therefore did not come as a surprise to anyone when the Ghana Entrepreneurs Foundation also decided to honour Archie Hesse with the Outstanding Digital Payment Technology CEO of the Year award just two weeks after he had been honoured at the Ghana Fintech Awards 2023.

The award was in recognition of his exceptional leadership in guiding GhIPSS over nearly 12 years.

Under his stewardship, Mr. Hesse has spearheaded the remarkable evolution of GhIPSS, collaborating closely with both banks and non-bank financial institutions to introduce a range of electronic payment channels to the public. 

Under Archie Hesse’s leadership, GhIPSS has built a state-of-the-art office building in the banking and finance district of Accra, where it has established the GhIPSS Academy to educate industry players and the general public on emerging digital finance and payments systems and innovations among other industry topics.

Archie Hesse’s recent accolades join a string of national and international awards he has received in recent years, which include the Most Inspirational Payments Business Leader in Africa, and one of the Africa Top 50 Digital Economy Leaders of the Year 2022.  

In response to the latest honour, Mr. Hesse remarked on Ghana’s significant progress in reducing its unbanked population from around 70 percent to less than 30 percent in under two decades.

He credited this achievement to the substantial modernisation efforts within the country’s payment sector, highlighting the collaborative efforts of various institutions working with GhIPSS.

He also praised the leadership of the Bank of Ghana and its Governors for their trust in GhIPSS, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Central Bank, and for granting them the autonomy to innovate and excel.

However, Mr. Hesse emphasised that there is still more work to be done, calling upon all stakeholders to continue working closely with GhIPSS and other players in the payment ecosystem to solidify the gains made thus far.

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