From the latest POTRAZ telecommunications sector report, Zimpost remains a player in statistics that continue to puzzle. Zimpost’s remittance service, Zipcash moved over $733,000 in transfers in the first quarter of 2015 alone. This is a positive move from $689,056 fourth quarter 2014. This was achieved through a branch network of 262 outlets across Zimbabwe.
We have debated about the value proposition that continues to sustain such a service as a viable business and it seems the relevance continues to grow.
From the perspective of the average urbanite millennial, it’s surprising that Zipcash, let alone Zimpost even exists. Times are different from the days when the only remittance service was registered mail or the bus driver. The introduction of mobile money, higher mobile penetration rates and new modern forms of communication has virtually rendered postal services useless.
In the same report, however, postal services continue to go down with some 2,245,932 postal and courier items processed down from 2,793,761 previously for local mail. 522,857 items were received across the border while Zimbabwe sent out 275,842 items in outgoing postal and courier mail.
Summarily, it is true that Zimbabweans no longer use postal services. The remaining users would probably be the corporate entities, Government departments, colleges and all those institutions where postal is recognised as a mandatory or legally recognised means through which to communicate with interested parties.
There are a few users of e-commerce who will use the system to receive goods purchased offshore. Otherwise postal is a nonentity because of the time it takes, plus the cost, especially of international couriered services, versus the cost of the items transported.