Why The New OneFusion Makes Sense And Doesn’t Make Sense At The Same Time


With NetOne introducing new OneFusion packages it’s only right that we take a look at why they may have made this move and if it actually makes sense.


How this began…

The uproar around the OneFusion service started about a week ago when subscribers started complaining about airtime running out much quicker than normal. Facebook and Whatsapp also stopped working as advertised, with pictures and videos proving hard to access.

NetOne’s lack of a clear response did not help them or their angry subscriber base. Eventually, NetOne released a statement but they didn’t talk about a solution. 22 hours ago they promised to resolve the situation within 24 hours but it is not yet clear if normalcy has been restored (NetOne subscribers are you viewing FB pics and Whatsapp pics without any disturbance now?)


We reported on the new OneFusion packages and now it’s time to take a look at why the packages make sense or why they actually don’t make sense. Remember there’s always two sides to a coin so let me try explain…

Why this makes sense

It’s all about turning a profit, and NetOne hasn’t managed to do so in a while.

Back in January, we reported on the fact that OneFusion may actually have been a failure. Unfortunately, the fact that OneFusion managed to pull in a sizeable (or is it sizable) number of subscribers (over 350 000) did not directly translate to profits for NetOne. In fact, there was a decrease in revenue since the introduction of OneFusion. This is why NetOne finds themselves in this position where they now have to revise the OneFusion package in order for the promotion to become viable for NetOne.

Last year NetOne failed to pay their telecoms license fees and this negatively impacted government revenue. The forfeiture of such fees might have been acceptable to the old regime, but with new sheriffs in town the pressure is on to perform and NetOne may not necessarily be allowed to avoid or negotiate these fees under the new dispensation.

The fact that NetOne is government owned also means that any debt incurred by NetOne is also a debt of the Zim government. In this new Zimbabwe that is being said to be ‘open for business’ the government is probably looking for ways to avoid being ravaged by debt and is probably breathing on the neck of NetOne which may be why they have been forced to revise their OneFusion offering.

In any case, the government as a shareholder wants to reap from whatever investments they have sowed into the telco over the years.

Turning a profit will also be of interest to the government and to NetOne as there are investors interested in them. Obviously, a profitable NetOne will be more enticing than one that is burning a hole in their pocket. Remember the government seems keen to let go of a number of the companies they own. Telecoms companies make sense if they go because they are too capital intensive and the government may achieve more by regulating them more stringently than by owning them.

Why this doesn’t make sense

The new OneFusion packages might lead to an exodus if subscribers don’t like what’s on offer.
An exodus might leave NetOne in a disastrous position and it will be interesting to see how the subscribers react as this will probably have a big bearing on NetOne’s future.

This is always the problem when you want to win market share through promotions

The revision of OneFusion also doesn’t really address the complaints of the subscribers. Judging from NetOne’s response you would think the subscribers were complaining about having too much data, but this is not the case. OneFusion users were complaining about disappearance of credit and inability to view media on Facebook and Whatsapp, as we mentioned at the start of this article. So this move to bring out new packages might be a move that was already in the works and is now being put into place after the catastrophic events that have befallen NetOne.

I know that catastrophic sounds dramatic but in a few years I think you will give me a firm handshake and acknowledge that this was indeed a catastrophe. Personally, I don’t see NetOne coming back from this one anytime soon but I hope they can recover quickly for the sake of competition at least.

They may have to stick through this change actually so that their bouncing back is not a promotion led bouncing back which is not sustainable. Their bouncing back should be a value proposition led bouncing back and that’s going to be harder but more sustainable.

The comments section is always open. Give us your take on the new packages and why they make sense or not.

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6 thoughts on “Why The New OneFusion Makes Sense And Doesn’t Make Sense At The Same Time

  1. The problem in in Zim is that people are allegic to truth. They want people who lie to them and praise singers. I raised straight points on their FB account and lm now marked spam😁

    There problem is simple technical, going by there claims, as a engineer l would just whitelist server names rather than ip addresses.

    1. I’m not an engineer myself, and I’m not a tech expert.

      I just wanted to say that I found it ominous to be told by NetOne that WhatsApp uses Amazon and Google’s servers. Is that possible, with all that data. For Facebook, maybe. There can be a lot of out-of-site browsing for sure! But for WhatsApp, I don’t think it should be a problem for one to view a multimedia file uploaded from one user onto WhatsApp’s servers and for another to download it from WhatsApp server!

  2. It is true what the article is saying, One Fusion, though very lucrative on the subscribers side, was in a sense unsustainable! This is the moment we have to accept reality.

    I think that NetOne needs to improve on their public relations. They should have at least terminated OneFusion, apologise for whats been happening a few weeks and months ago, fix the IP addresses issue, lay low for a few weeks then come back with a promotion with a new name, though with the same offers as the new OneFusion. It wouldn’t have hurt customers as much.

    I personally am not inclined to this caliber of doing things of companies that don’t like to apologise and take responsibility for what happened, being full of excuses and purpoted better ‘quick fixes’.

    I believe what OneFusion customers would’ve appreciated more, would’ve been NetOne being true to themselves and everyone else, admitting that OneFusion was not a financial success, and that it hasn’t been sustainable. In that sense, an apology would have to be made for prompt termination of the promotion and giving customers about one months notice before termination of all OneFusion bundles, and an announcement that they have to go back to the drawing board to come up with something new. Not better, but new.

    The way they told customers that they are coming up with something better yet proving to be better for them and not most of the customers, wasn’t the best way to go. They needed to be straight and not go about bends in coming out with a new plan that should be profitable for them whilst not being as such for the customers.

    It’s tough doing business, it’s never easy. I do wish NetOne and it’s affiliates better success in their future endeavours. They have provided a good service at a cost to them for the masses.

    1. I’m a OneFusion subscriber. I also didn’t appreciate it when at first I noticed that browsing through Facebook App was using up the pure data portion of OneFusion, I complained in a message to OneFusion Facebook Page. I was responded to with that automated long technical message about the changes in the Facebook and WhatsApp apps. In other words, NetOne knew that that was happening, but never bothered to inform it’s customers that that was what was happening. They just let people figure out what was happening with their data yet they knew it from the start and never informed anyone, unless when asked! A heads-up would’ve been really nice and helpful too.

  3. One-fi data has also been reduced, $99 for 75G, $59 for 40G, $39 for 25G, $19 for 10g (valid for 14days). free minutes that accompany one fi have been scrapped

  4. Why do I not hear anyone talking about out data refunds. Fine, all the drama happened but please givee back my data. I called in to the Call Center and all I got was an we haven’t been given a directive on that matter responce

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