Techzim

Zimbabwe and regional technology news and updates

advertisement

[Updated] Senditoo partners Access Forex, resumes operations after shutting down services for weeks

Semditto Access Forex partnership

You are probably familiar with Senditoo by now. What started with airtime transfer morphed into a fully fledged remittance service. Over the years we watched the service gain partners and increase its reach in Zimbabwe and across Africa.

In Zimbabwe, Senditoo partnered with a number of banks, allowing their customers to collect funds at those banks’ branch networks countrywide. We saw the BancABC partnership first, then came the Steward Bank and CABS ones.

They signed up other agents in addition to banks. So for a while it seemed there was no stopping Senditoo. However, something happened and Senditoo had to stop all money transfers into Zimbabwe for a few weeks.

Said Senditoo,

We had to shut down our money transfers as we were facing all sorts of challenges in moving money from the UK into Zimbabwe. So much that we had to stop.

Takwana Tyaranini

What happened?

Just what where those challenges? Could it be licence related? You know, the same issues that led to local remittance solution InnBucks being shut down. Not likely, Senditoo had the required authorisations from the regulators. 

We talked to some people with intimate knowledge of the remittances world and Senditoo’s issue was likely due to irregularities with their UK banking partner. They most likely lost their UK banking partner for whatever reason, probably compliance related.

Without that UK banking partner they could not offer remittance services. See, when it comes to remittances, the money that’s sent needs to be wired to the destination country. So, from a UK bank to a Zim bank’s Nostro account in Senditoo’s case.

Senditoo could not simply utilise funds already in Zimbabwe, or sourced elsewhere to complete a transfer transaction. Word is Senditoo may have attempted to do this leading to local partners sidelining them. This is all speculation by those knowledgeable on the matter.

As you shall see, Senditoo now relies on Access Forex’s payout portal. The payout portal is the tech that allows them to process and collect payments. It’s integral to their service.

We reached out to Senditoo to find out what really happened and we will update you once we have an answer. 

Whatever the challenges were, a new partnership with Access Forex is just what the doctor ordered. 

Senditoo partners Access Forex

International Remittance company Senditoo has partnered with the fastest growing global money transfer business, Access Forex to allow Zimbabweans in the UK to send money to loved ones across a wider network. Access Forex offers a distribution network of nearly 200 collection points nationwide. Access Forex is part of the Access Finance International Group.

Through this partnership Access Forex is debuting its unique capacity to offer solutions to other MTA’s. Senditoo and other money transfer companies can now benefit from the home-grown systems and infrastructure that Access Forex provides. The partnership is instrumental for Senditoo, which has a presence in several countries, has plans to expand services into South Africa, the US and Canada in the coming months having established its international headquarters in the UK, Guinea, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

Raymond Chigogwana, Chief Executive Officer of the Group, said: “We are delighted to be able to lend our valuable distribution network and secure payout portal to more customers. We have enjoyed working closely with Senditoo to switch their full portfolio of services back on and ultimately, ensure that Zimbabweans locally and abroad get cash to where it is needed most. By the time we roll-out fully, everywhere you see an Access Forex, you can now also access Senditoo.” 

Senditoo’s money transfer service will allow for $2 flat-fee remittances with complimentary exchange rates and real-time transaction monitoring.

Senditoo has grown in the last four years, starting with airtime transfers before extending its service offer to include money remittances and enabling customers to also pay their bills. They have also introduced an online grocery delivery service.

Takwana Tyaranini, Senditoo Co-founder, said: “This partnership cements our commitment to being the remittance service provider of choice for Zimbabwean living abroad and locally.

“Senditoo was set up to connect the African diaspora to loved ones at home. In line with our strategic priorities, we have partnered with some of the most reputable businesses and organizations across Zimbabwe, Zambia, Guinea and the UK to create a strong presence – ensuring our customers have fast, simple, and hassle-free international transfers”.

“We are continually working on our product and service delivery to provide customers across Zimbabwe with accessible pay-out points that are convenient and cost effective.

“We have ambitious growth targets and teaming up with Access Forex means we will not only be able to scale up but give our customers a premium and quality service.”

“Part of our objectives include giving outstanding service to individuals and companies, helping them understand the benefits they have when it comes to their transactions and ensuring there is financial inclusivity, where everyone can participate.

“Through Access Forex, we now have a presence in every province and district with nearly 200 payout points that are easily accessible, allowing people to respond to critical business and personal needs without the need for travel and we are looking forward to the synergies with Access Forex that will help us further deliver on our growth plan.”

Win-win?

It appears this is now just Senditoo in name only. The infrastructure, which should include even the UK banking partner, is Access Forex’s. The question though becomes, what’s in it for both parties?

It is easy to see why Senditoo would want this. They were as good as dead without this or a similar deal.

What’s in it for Access Forex then? This is new territory for them as they try lending out their distribution network and payment portal. It does make sense though not to pass on handling all of Senditoo’s traffic.

I couldn’t help but notice that in all this, Senditoo is not mentioning their other distribution partners. That leads me to believe Access Forex demanded exclusivity. So, they get those sweet Senditoo fees all to themselves.

You saw that Senditoo is looking to enter South Africa in the coming months. Well, Access Forex is already in that market offering the same services Senditoo does. How will that work now that Access Forex is the backbone on which Senditoo relies?

Access Forex will not stop pushing their remittance service. Yet, they will also get a piece of the pie from a competitor’s success. That sounds like a plan.

The concern would be that this is like DHL delivering FedEx’s packages for a fee. The customer still thinks they used FedEx and it worked like a charm.

We don’t know the details of Senditoo and Access Forex’s arrangement. However, from the outside, one wonders what would happen if Senditoo fixed their UK banking partner mess. Would they be able to drop Access Forex and utilise the network they had before all this?

If that happened, Access Forex would just have helped a competitor stay afloat only to have them reemerge as proper competition.

Let us know what you think about all this in the comments below.

Update:

We talked to Senditoo and can tell you that indeed a banking challenge was the reason they had to shut down for a few weeks. However, they are in a stronger position now with the Access Forex partnership than they were in before.

As regards Access Forex demanding exclusivity, we were off on that one. Senditoo will still work with other distribution partners and are actually in talks with possible agents.

Senditoo says they realise the down time they faced inconvenienced their customers but they worked hard to resolve the issues quickly. They say they still could have done better and vow to improve there too.


Quick NetOne, Econet, And Telecel Airtime Recharge

One thought on “[Updated] Senditoo partners Access Forex, resumes operations after shutting down services for weeks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.