Steward Bank Launches Kwenga, A Portable POS Machine For The Masses

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Steward Bank seems to be getting it. Banking is not banking if it excludes the majority. The battle cry in Zimbabwe has been ‘financial inclusion for everyone.’ If you are to include everyone you have to first understand what everyone is doing and develop products specifically for them. That’s what Kwenga does.

Zimbabwe is going cashless, we all know it’s not because of a collective decision but rather necessity. We do have a serious cash crisis in this country and swipe, ZIPIT, mobile money and RTGS have played a significant role in¬†alleviating the people from the full wrath of the crisis.

Today, Steward Bank unveiled Kwenga, a portable POS machine which is specially crafted for Small to Medium Enterprise (SME). And I’m sure as we know, the country has more of SME than anything else, which makes Kwenga quite relevant.

Steward Bank has always targeted the most ignored yet most populated market. When every other bank had high bank charges and multiple requirements prior to opening a bank account, Steward Bank came along with lower charges and prerequisites and as a result the iSave account attracted about half a million Zimbabweans.

Where an ordinary POS machine costs $600 – $700 to acquire, Kwenga costs only $35 for the smaller device and $200 for the bigger one. The device allows for up to 5 users to share, hence the costs of acquiring the machine can be shared as well.

For micropayments that are below a dollar, Kwenga does not attract any extra charges. This is huge because it means people can now swipe in Kombis. You know how your cash worries begin whenever you think of commuting, well done right Kwenga should make life much more simpler for us.

Added to that, Kwenga allows you to swipe into Ecocash. Ecocash is the most used digital payment platform in Zimbabwe, taking about 80% of all e-transactions.

The Kwenga merchant portal is available on internet banking, mobile banking and even on your kambudzi. Here you can apply for Kwenga loans without having to visit the bank. Their algorithms look at your activity and decide if you get one.


  1. T1

    Zim is getting interesting , Swipa Kombi launch their product 2 days later Kwenga launch theirs. 2018 year of change for sure. We could have our very own Steve Jobs and Elon Musks soon.

    1. Victor

      Swipa Kombi??? Did all the Tech Blogs miss this one?

      1. Allaz

        Google missed it too apparently coz all I can find is one youtube video which basically shows nothing. No device, just text and graphics making promises. Where is the info on this?

        1. Learny

          Yah I think its mainly because in these countries there are no cash shortages like what we experience here in Zimbabwe, that’s why they are not taking much interest in these things otherwise if they want they can do it in a small period of time these Tech giants

  2. JamesM

    Now folks this is good and very visionary. What Steward bank has done is come up with a solution that answers a very real problem for small to mid businesses. And this is how you succeed in tech. Someone over at Steward is thinking. Then you have to wonder what banks like Barclays, CABS, Standard who have been around since time began are doing. The digital economy and fintech have no respect for staid laggards. Well done Steward.

    1. Lee

      Its all down to divergent models of business. Obviously Steward cashes in on the economies of scale.Those large international/local banks do make their money from large corporates, few as they may but they make huge deposits and investments not those $2 or $5 for SMEs. Nonetheless great move by Steward bank!

  3. Blessing Chapoto

    Steward bank kwavakuseri vanhuwe. Uju ndiko kunonzi kufambirana nenguva. Well done team Steward.

  4. TSA-The_Serial_Analyst

    Good one Steward bank! An applause for you right there.
    On another note, are their systems now solid? Vakambotikuvadza some time. I hope this new launch signals better processes now

  5. Happy

    We’l go there to get better understanding of this new innovation and how best our business can benefit from it. Seems to make like a lot easier.Kudos.

  6. Marshal Chirimumimba

    lnnovation and creativity. Welldone Strive

  7. michael f mushonga

    Well Done Team Steward.

  8. Roy Gono

    Well done #StewardBank #LetsMakeZimbabweGreatAgain

  9. nyeperakudzungaira

    one of the epic things is that a chunk not sure how big of kwenga traffic will be from money changersetc makingit easier to faciitate moving cash dealing. and here like ecocash econet will have to pretend like they are are not aware of what thei merchants are doing.

  10. c miritiawo

    what are the requirements for one to get a kwenga machine (for any individual and a company)

  11. Ropa

    CABS already has this product …at Techzim. .look into that

  12. Kundai Huchu

    Steward bank guys are super innovative though obviously some of them had hiccups at the start.This is what Zimbabwe needs,mobile money solutions that are able to cater for almost every Zimbabwean so as to develop our country and include those that are financially marginalised..Well done guys…keep up the good work.

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