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Press Release: EcoCash open to every bank in Zimbabwe

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EcoCashA senior Econet Wireless executive, Mr Darlington Mandivenga, who is responsible for the rollout of EcoCash, has dismissed a claim reportedly made by Bankers Association of Zimbabwe’s immediate past president, Mr John Mushayavanhu, stating that Econet has denied banks access to its platform for integration.

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Mr Mandivenga said: “That is simply not true. We have agreements with most of the banks, and we are currently carrying out physical connections with most of them. We as Econet initiated the process, and we are very keen to get it completed, but it cannot be rushed because it involves accessing bank accounts.”

Mr Mandivenga said Econet expects most banks to have their systems running by the end of March. “Right now I am expecting three major banks to go live within 10 days, because we are almost complete.”

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The Econet Wireless executive named CABS as the only institution which has been actively trying to fight the EcoCash service and has tried unsuccessfully to lobby against it.

“As you know, CABS have been working with ZIMSWITCH to launch a service called Textacash. Since their own customer base is very small compared to the Econet subscriber base of 8 million, they want us to open up our system, so that they can simply spam any of our customers with text messages. We will never allow that because it would not only violate our license, it would be total abuse of customers’ privacy.”

Mr Mandivenga named former CABS boss, Mr Kevin Terry, now at Old Mutual, as the main instigator.

“He wants to create an impression that this is the position of all banks, but he does not disclose to them that it is his own interest that he is fighting for. If CABS and Zimswitch want to compete with us, they are free to do so, but they must build a proper system that reaches the rural people in Zimbabwe. They have been there for decades, and never did anything to benefit the masses. This is not about the interests of banks or cell phone companies, it is about providing services to ordinary Zimbabweans,” he said.

Mr Mandivenga said that the campaign by Mr Terry had not surprised Econet. “Our friends in the banking system have told us about his campaigns to try and preserve the status quo in which less than 3% of our people had access to the formal financial system, and where thousands of people had to line up every month for hours just to access their own money, or travel all day just to find a CABS branch. This is not the future.”


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10 thoughts on “Press Release: EcoCash open to every bank in Zimbabwe

  1. “… they want us to open up our system, so that they can simply spam any of our customers with text messages. We will never allow that because it would not only violate our license, it would be total abuse of customers’ privacy.”

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA Sorry don’t remember signing up for Econet’s spam for buddie beatz, not sign up for pyramid schemes etc…

    Anyway good to see they are putting in some effort with the banks, and that competition is starting to creep in…

  2. Despite what we might not know, Econet has made the development of an eco-system difficult by continuing to abuse their market dominance but the other end of the argument is ‘that’s how it works in capitalism’.

    1. exactly – they have become a monopoly and now since they own a bank they are blocking others trying to promote products of their bank. all monopolies behave like that – it is so predictable

  3. Warning.

    ” … they want us to open up our system, so that they can simply spam any of our
    customers with text messages. We will never allow that… ”

    This quote comes with an optional straight face. Terms and conditions apply.

  4. I love the energy in the mobile banking market which at the end will be good for us the customers becoz services will improve and prices will go down. I think we are seeing interesting developments here which are benefiting the masses while some elite individual do not want to see a service destined for the masses succeed. Banks have failed to innovate for years and they are rushing to the media to talk about EcoCash which is for the people. With my CBZ account I can do bank to wallet and then use my wallet to buy airtime and pay at Chicken inn. Mr Mushayavanhu and his team in my view has been met by people with determination to succeed in their mission to offer financial inclusion. Why cant banks just build their own customer base and agent network? These companies which complain are sisi in this market. When Econet was building 8 million customer base where were banks. Let EcoCash got forward in their mission to assist us the customers.

  5. do the majority of the zimbabweans know about the charges they incur in sending cash via that system ? thats 7 % to those who do not know . suppose you want to send 100usd to a person maybe in chitungwiza then you will be charged 7usd for that and why cant you just catch a kombi go there and drop the money suppose you are in harare ? it will cost you less than 5usd and the remainder you can buy yourself bread for the kids kumba and good to go so calculate that with the amount that you wanna send and the cost of transport n going there . people we just need to keep and budget the little that you have not to splash it the ecocash way way think and calculate before sending ……………..

    1. The costs for sending money by EcoCash are 2% up to a cap of 6USD. You can never pay more than 6USD for any transaction. I think there is a misconception out there. The challenge is we do not factor the convenience and the time saved in my view.

  6. Gibberish! Econet overcharges its Ecocash facility’s clients, When it comes to spamming, i dont think anyone does it better than Econet, a whole lot of stupid messages every hour, stuff we didnt even sign up for.

    “They (CABS) have been there for decades, and never did anything to benefit the masses. This is not about the interests of banks or cell phone companies, it is about providing services to ordinary Zimbabweans” Nothing can be further from the truth than this, CABS has one of the widest branch networks, probably just beyond POSB in Zim, and some os their branches are in the remote areas, and guess what, they never overcharged us like what Ecocash is doing!

    For Eonet, its not ” about providing services to ordinary Zimbabweans”, but profiteering from their grasp on the market, something that should be stopped ASAP

    At the end of the day, thanx Econet for EcoCash, but plase do it for the ordinary Zimbabweans like you claim!

  7. Guys guys guys, ngatisatukaneyi mu business, especially when we are not shareholders. vanhu vangabva vatukana muma newspaper zvakadaro, its bad for business and career wise its not good. As a customer i do not like it. i just want good service and quality products kwete kuswera muchingoudzana kuti mukuru ndiyani. Please lets be professional. Techzim thanks for the prompt updates.

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