Zimbabwe and regional technology news and updates

POSB launches dual currency Mastercard debit card and joins the prepaid USD card fight

The People’s Own Savings Bank (POSB) has partnered with Mastercard to unveil new debit and prepaid cards. Okay, ‘what’s interesting about that?’ – you ask. Read on. Mastercard debit The more interesting of the two is the debit card. The Mastercard debit card allows customers to make dual currency transactions on the same card. That […]

[Update] Lance Mambondiani forced to step down from BancABC MD position

For some reason, I am not that surprised. If you’re honest, you will admit that you’re not that surprised too. It is being reported that Dr Lance Mambondiani, BancABC managing director, has been placed on forced leave pending investigations into alleged malpractices. It is highly unlikely that he will be returning to BancABC after that […]

ZB Financial Holdings expands to Botswana

ZB Financial Holdings (ZBFH) has announced that it will be expanding its operations to Botswana. The move has been necessitated by the need for the group to diversify its revenue sources as stated by the Group CEO Shepherd Fungura. From a strategic point, ZBFH was motivated to establish in Botswana due to the need to […]

It’s not Mukuru with high charges. All Domestic remittances are expensive and it’s by design

Some quick math on social media suggested that Mukuru and how charges were inconsistent for domestic remittances. In the post, the math went something like this.  1/ Stolen…. A) Sending US$450 via Mukuru from Harare to Chipinge you are charged US$23. And the maximum you can send is US$450. That means if I were to […]

FBC launches Mastercard Virtual Cards you can register for from home

There is a lot that sucks about having a weak currency like the ZW$. I mean, this currency is not even internationally recognised. You can externalise as many bond notes as you like but they have no value outside the country. The millions in your local currency account are equally useless across the border. You […]

Zimswitch new ZIPIT limits Oct 2022

Zimswitch has announced new limits for person-to-person transactions. This limit is now ZW$150 000 per transaction up from ZW$100 000 with the monthly limit now set at ZW$600 000. These new transaction limits will be taking effect from today, 10 October 2022. Zimswitch Statement Customer NoticeZIPIT LIMIT REVIEWDear Valued Customer, Please be advised that the […]

ZWL Bank charges 2022: a necessary evil for the banks, a nightmare for the customer

The local banks have been updating their ZWL bank charges over the course of the last couple of months which reflects the state of the economy. In a normal country, these charges would be seldom altered for the local currency because those nations have some relative stability. In Zimbabwe, however, things are not so, mainly […]

Nedbank customers, swipe limit is now at ZWL$1.5 million

Nedbank Zimbabwe has, in an SMS to customers, said that it has upped the point of sale (POS) swipe limit to ZWL$1.5 million for individuals and ZWL$2.5 for corporates. Dear Client, We advise that our daily swipe limits have been reviewed to ZWL1.5 million for individuals & ZWL2.5 million for Private Banking, Corporates/SMEs. Nedbank Zimbabwe […]

Find out more about Nyaradzo’s Sahwira Connect Card and the Zimbabwean payments mess it is solving for

We talked about Nyaradzo’s Sahwira Connect Card earlier this month. It is a welcome innovation which should not have been needed but is. When we talked about the card we had a few questions and fortunately we managed to get answers from Nyaradzo. Nyaradzo confirmed to us the problem being solved by the Sahwira Connect […]

ZB Bank has rebranded & says it wants to put a smile on its customers’ faces

ZB Bank Zimbabwe yesterday held an event where it unveiled its new company branding and direction to shareholders, customers and the press. Before I go any further, I would like to commend ZB for the most “to the point” presentation I have ever witnessed. The CEO Shepherd Fungura was the only one from the bank […]

EcoCash physical Mastercard is back (again) & it still can’t do online payments

A couple of months ago EcoCash announced that it was entering the domestic remittance game as well as pushing the company’s FCA wallet. This was quite a surprise because the prevailing assumption was that EcoCash was in some sort of conflict with the regulators. However, as it turned out, this was not the case as […]

NMB on a security mission, finally deactivates magnetic stripe cards

There was obviously a serious meeting on security over at NMB Bank. We are now seeing the resolutions that were made at that meeting come to life. Just yesterday we were discussing how NMB now won’t let you log into their mobile banking app unless you pony up your location data. NMB confirmed that they […]

NMB Connect says give up your location or no banking for you. What’s that all about?

One thing we love about the internet is how it’s more or less the same internet regardless of where you access it. Some of you are reading this from the UK, some are in SA, and at least 0.6% this week have been located in Pakistan. Save for some geo-locked content, the internet experience is […]

Zim forcing companies to innovate in payments – Nyaradzo introduces Sahwira Connect Card

The proverb goes, ‘a stitch in time saves nine.’ This no doubt applies to medical care more than anything else. Hence why the wise ancestors used stitches as an example. However, they could have said ‘a dollar in time is like a million’ and it still would have had the same impact. Am I really […]

First Capital & EIB EUR12.5 mil loan facility: Collateral, interest rates & startups

First Capital Bank today announced that it was a beneficiary bank of the European Investment Bank‘s (EIB) medium – long term lines of credit (4 to 7 years) aimed at giving Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs) a valuable USD lifeline. Before we get into that it was interesting to see that Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe […]

First Capital & European Investment Bank bring EUR 12,5 mil credit line for SMEs

First Capital Bank Limited in partnership with the European Investment Bank and the European Union have today secured a developmental line of credit to the tune of EUR 12,5 Million (USD13.7 million). The funding is set to develop eligible investment projects undertaken by Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and MidCap companies under First Capital Bank […]

StanChart increases online & bank app transfer limit to ZWL$25 million

Standard Chartered Zimbabwe (StanChart) has announced in a circular to customers that it has reviewed its transfer limit via its online and mobile application banking platforms to ZWL$25 million. The message from StanChart about the transfer limit reads as follows: Dear Valued Client, We are pleased to advise that we have increased our funds transfer limits […]

Govt says willing-buyer-willing-seller for forex but it’s more like fortunate-buyer-unwilling-seller

The Zim govt announced that retailers are no longer allowed to offer discounts for those paying in USD. Instead, they shall accept both the USD and the ZW$ and use the interbank rate to price using the 2 currencies. In fact, use of the willing buyer willing seller rate is now mandatory by law. Unfortunately, […]

BancABC distances itself from paper analysing the govt’s economic measures. Paper makes good points regardless

The Zimbabwean government did a number on banks, suspending loans that are responsible for a third of their revenues. We know that banks are trying to engage the authorities to see if they can’t find a better solution to the abuse of loan funds by the public. Banks are going about it in a civil […]

Suspension of loans: Bank charges are going up, here’s why

We have been going down the rabbit hole of the new “economic measures” and the most confusing one of them all was the suspension of lending or loans. I say this because Zimbabwe has not been a lending market because of the currency gymnastics that have been a feature of the last decade. One moment […]

With lending suspended, banks will be okay but microfinance institutions likely to struggle

Still wild to think the government woke up one day and outlawed the activity that pulls in a third of banks’ revenue. The government suspended all lending in the country and financial institutions are scrambling to engage them with a view to changing their minds. Let’s look at how banks and other financial institutions will […]

RBZ on suspension of bank lending. Partly drawn loans are suspended too. What is the rationale behind these decisions?

It started with a short paragraph by the President. If we hadn’t been living in Zimbabwe for the past 2 decades we would have been more shocked – all lending by banks was suspended on the 7th of May 2022. In his speech, President Mnangagwa said, In order to minimise the creation of broad money […]

FBC Bank announces new Mastercard US$60 limit security feature

FBC Bank has, in a statement, said that it is taking a proactive approach to guarding customers against fraud with a new US$60 limit security feature for its USD Mastercard platform for online transactions. FBC’s statement on the Mastercard security feature and limit reads as follows: FBC Bank continues to transform with global e-commerce products […]

We ran into BancABC at ZITF 2022

We ran into BancABC at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair ZITF 2022. Shingai Vutoyi one of the Branch Managers for BancABC was kind enough to talk us through what the bank was up to at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF 2022). You can watch the tour of BancABC’s booth at ZITF 2022 with the […]

Zimswitch at ZITF 2022: NOSTRO EFTs, debit orders, wallet on POS & more

The National Payments Switch, Zimswitch was an exhibitor at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF 2022). It appears that their main mission for this year’s edition of the ZITF was to interface with customers (both corporate and individual) about who they actually are and what they do. For all those who might not be aware […]

RBZ bans Simbisa’s InnBucks with immediate effect!

The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) has announced that it has ordered Simbisa to halt operations of its loyalty and rewards program, InnBucks with immediate effect. The RBZ’s statement on InnBucks is as follows: PRESS STATEMENT CESSATION OF INNBUCKS OPERATING AS A MONEY TRANSFER SERVICE PROVIDER The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (the Bank) advises the […]

Standard Chartered says “sales process will commence in due course” as bank exits Zim

Last week, Standard Chartered Bank announced that it will be withdrawing from Zim along with Angola Cameroon, Gambia, Jordan, Lebanon, and Sierra Leone. The decision to do this is because these territories accounted for 1% of the bank’s income in 2021. We reached out to Standard Chartered Bank to get more information about what will […]

Standard Chartered is leaving Zimbabwe but its not happening overnight

Standard Chartered has announced that it will be pulling out of Zimbabwe as well as Angola, Cameroon, Gambia, Jordan, Lebanon, and Sierra Leone. Additionally, the bank will be scaling down operations in Tanzania and Ivory Coast, focusing only on corporate banking. The reason for the complete departure (and scaling back) from these markets, according to […]

30% interest per month on a loan? The Zimbabwean credit situation improving but still the wild west

There is no such thing as a purely capitalist economy and like many, Zimbabwe is a mixed economy. However, we have flirted with socialism more than most with our ‘command’ efforts in recent times as an example.  We still have a somewhat limited free market though. Although the government loves to exert control in the […]

Cassava’s Sasai Remit partners with UK women’s org on money transfers to Zim & SA

Sasai Remit, a subsidiary of Cassava Technologies, has announced a partnership with Qoki Zindlovukazi, a United Kingdom-based women’s networking and empowerment organisation. The two say the partnership will enable both organisations to empower thousands of Zimbabweans to use a safe and secure fintech platform to seamlessly transfer funds to family and friends in South Africa […]