Mr. Archiebald “Archie” Beldad owns a pharmacy located in the town center of Cantilan, Surigao del Sur located in rural northeastern Mindanao. As a registered client of Cantilan Bank, a participating bank under the Microenterprise Access to Banking Services (MABS) Program, Archie began using GCASH for business in March 2007. He purchases and sells GCASH in small amounts and accepts GCASH as payment for his goods. He has a good credit record with the bank where he has been maintaining a deposit account for several years. Archie also uses the convenience of the Text-A-Withdrawal facility to withdraw from his deposit account and load up on GCASH. When he has extra funds in GCASH, he also uses Text-A-Deposit to send money back to deposit in his account remotely.
Archie also helps his customers when they need to convert small amounts of GCASH to cash or cash to GCASH. According to Archie, he has a lot of people who come to him to convert GCASH to cash at the end of the year and then to convert cash to GCASH at the beginning of the year because students who had come home for the Christmas break go back to their schools in other cities like Cebu, Surigao, Cagayan de Oro, and Butuan. This has been the practice used by parents who do not want to risk having their children carry much cash with them when they go on a long travel back to their schools.
MABS is a technical assistance program supported by USAID in partnership with the Rural Bankers Association of the Philippines (RBAP), with oversight provided by the Office of the President through the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) (formerly Mindanao Economic Development Council or MEDCo). The Program is designed to expand microenterprise access to banking services by developing the capability of rural banks to profitably provide financial services to microenterprises and those belonging to the lower income segments of the population.