EcoCashCredit: Econet to provide loans via EcoCash

L.S.M Kabweza Avatar

ecocash-agentsLast month, when Econet launched the mobile phone based savings account, in an article titled, “EcoCash (Save) is the new bank account for the masses” we wrote:

The savings account opens up opportunity for EcoCash to launch even more services that so far have been the reserve of traditional financial institutions. Loans especially. And even the release today has a hint of that when you read that they are encouraging employers to start paying salaries into this savings account. Once a salary is being paid into an account, loans can be issued to that subscriber with enough confidence it won’t go bad. And again this doesn’t necessarily have to be the micro loans.

It didn’t take too long. Today, a press release from the company appeared in our mailbox. The title: “EcoCash to lend money“.

Announcing the service, the mobile operator said that starting early next year, users of mobile money savings service will be able to borrow from the company’s partner financial institutions via EcoCash. So far, that financial institution partner is Steward Bank.

The release doesn’t have details about the service – who will qualify, amount limits, how long the loans will take to process, interests rates and so on. We’re guessing however that platform will do some kind of credit rating based on inflows into the savings account; most probably predictable inflows such as salaries. If meeting requirements, the loans will likely be processed much faster than traditional loans banks provide. The price of the money is anyone’s guess right now, but we’re guessing it’ll largely be at par with market rates.

We will posting more details as we get them, but in the meantime, here’s the full release:

EcoCashSave account holders will soon be able to also borrow money, just like ordinary bank account holders. This is part of what will be called EcoCashCredit that Econet is planning to roll out early in the new year.

Econet Wireless CEO, Douglas Mboweni, confirmed that a scheme is being developed whereby people can also borrow money from EcoCash.

He said the borrowing will be done through partner banks, including Steward Bank.

He said lending was a natural next step, adding that the plan was to lend for uses such school fees, right up to housing loans. He said more details would be released in the new year.

Meanwhile, Mr Mboweni confirmed that the number of bank accounts held by Steward Bank on behalf of EcoCashSave now surpassed those held by all the banks put together. “We have more than 900,000 account holders, compared to 850,000 for all the banks,” he said.


  1. chaporomoka Chamukwenjere


  2. Farai Sairai

    Watch out, these unsecured loans will put people into serious financial trouble.

    1. Benj

      I beg to differ there, if anything Zimbos out there will feel secure borrowing from EcoCash than other money lenders and “loan shacks”.

      1. Farai Sairai

        Still same thing. Whether from Econet/Barclays or from Tapiwa the big hairy dude in a one room offering unsecured loans, the result is the same – offering microloans to people who cannot afford them. And that spells trouble.

        Microlending is big business but has ruined a lot of people’s lives. Let’s talk about this in 12 months time when pay back is a “b1tch” for these loans.

  3. Nyasha

    next up will be medical aid and insurance – then the next thing you know Econet is your government. Government is inadvertentily outsourcing its functions to the private sector at the moment.

  4. James slaten

    Do you need a loan? Do you want to pay the bills? Do you want to expand your business? All you need to do is contact us for more information on how to start and how to get the loan you want. This offer is open to all, that they may return in due time. Please note that the maturity of the contract staff and the interest rate of 3%. You must inform us of the exact loan amount requested so as to enable us to provide you with the credit terms. If you are interested in getting a loan from our firm.
    Please fill out the short application form, as shown below:

    Loan application form {online}
    1) NAME ……………….
    2) COUNTRY …………….
    3) Occupation ………….
    4) Marital status ………
    5) PHONE NUMBER …………….
    6) MONTHLY INCOME …………..
    7) ADDRESS …………………
    8) The purpose of the loan ………….
    9) credit applications …………….
    10) credit for ………………


    Mr. James Slaten

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