Zimbabwe and regional technology news and updates

Mastercard launches Fintech Express in the Middle East and Africa

Mastercard has launched Fintech Express in the Middle East and Africa. The program is designed for emerging and established businesses under the fintech umbrella looking to add payment solutions or innovate through partnerships. The program aims to expand Mastercard’s partnership with fintech companies and to create a seamless process of bringing fintech enterprises into the […]

SA fintech Ozow launches zero-rate data payment apps

South African fintech company Ozow (formerly known as i-Pay) has launched two payments apps. One payment solution is a progressive web app that won’t require data and the other is an application that simplifies bank transfers. In what the company is calling the Ozow Revolution, they seek to make digital payments available to every South […]

ZimSwitch to launch new and improved ZIPIT Smart tomorrow

Last week, we wrote about ZIPIT Smart, a product we are excited to see enter the market. ZIPIT has announced that their new product will be launched tomorrow. ZIPIT Smart will allow merchants (retailers and business owners) to accept ZIPIT payments in a seamless and instant manner. Think of it as being similar to how […]

DFS Lab is looking to invest in founders building the future of digital commerce in Africa

We are living in unprecedented times. The coronavirus pandemic has brought on new problems as well as magnified existing ones in Africa. There are individuals and collectives out there working on some of these solutions but it is tough for entrepreneurs to get funding. This is where Digital Financial Services (DFS) Lab comes in. DFS […]

Video: Zipit Smart brings EcoCash features to your bank account

Zimswitch is about to give ZIPIT an upgrade and new features include merchant services as well as cardless transactions. In this video we get some 1st impressions of how it all works. Quick NetOne, Econet, And Telecel Airtime Recharge Number to recharge: Airtime amount ($): EcoCash or OneMoney number: Buy Please dial our USSD code […]

Strive Masiyiwa announces imminent launch of Sasai Pay & Content Platform

Strive Masiyiwa took to his Facebook to announce that Sasai is launching a payment service in a week’s time. In his FB post, he talked about Sasai Pay in the context of consumers buying audio/video/music content online to solve the problems of piracy. In a post published yesterday, Econet Global’s Chairman announced that the platform […]

2% transaction tax is coming to USD transactions

It was a matter of time wasn’t it? The 2% tax levied on all electronic transactions by the government is such a cash cow, it is not going anywhere. The only direction we should expect it to go is upwards or sideways. Today, in his mid term budget review the minister of finance has extended […]

“ZANU PF commends gvt for allowing ‘EcoCash’ to be overseen by RBZ through Zimswitch”

The title of this article is a paraphrase of part of the statement issued by ZANU PF today commenting on the economy. Here is the actual excerpt: ZANU PF also wishes to commend government for the decision that it has taken to allow mobile money operators to be overseen by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe […]

Killing monopoly by creating a bigger monopoly, Zimswitch as national switch

Yes EcoCash is too dominant. It had above 98% share of all mobile money transactions in the first quarter of 2020 which translates to above 80% of all transactions in Zimbabwe period. The word monopoly is a fair one. The RBZ wants to do something about that Yesterday, Zimbabwe’s central bank issued a communique which […]

EcoCash is under threat – gvt to blame BUT underlying problem is EcoCash/Cassava/Econet

Yesterday a colleague mentioned that they were denied using EcoCash at a service station. All other forms of payment were acceptable except EcoCash. This didn’t surprise me. First let’s make sure those who have been living under a rock are caught up: On Friday the 26th of June 2020, the Government of Zimbabwe declared that […]

Tanzanian Fintech launches app to help improve personal finance management

Mipango Fintech from Tanzania has launched a free personal finance app for Android and iOS. The app is in Swahili and aims to help Tanzanians manage their personal finances. “Financial literacy is a key gap in the growth and development of this market. Over 50% of Tanzanian adults do not keep track of their expenditures […]

African Fintech startup Chipper Cash lands USD18m funding

In a report by Tech Crunch, African cross border fintech company Chipper Cash has closed a Series A USD$18.3 Million fund led by a venture capital group called Deciens Capital. Background Chipper was founded by Ham Serunjogi from Uganda and Ghanaian Maijid Moujaled in 2018.  They met in America at University before they went on to […]

RBZ Making Transactions Harder – They Will Achieve The Opposite Of What They Want

Zimbabwe’s central bank has made it hard for me to write of them in any positive light in a very long time. In recent weeks they have issued unilateral decisions that limit how we can use our own money. RBZ forbids you from buying a TV The central bank is so fixated on imposing limits […]

No Company Or Individual Should Do More Than 2 Internal Bank Transfers Per Day – RBZ

It keeps getting stranger by the day. Here is a circula sent to banks by the Financial Intelligence Unit of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe: 4 June 2020 Measures to prevent abuse of internal bank transfers for illegal foreign currency transactions Further to our circular to banks dated 26th of May 2020, titled “Enhanced Scrutiny […]

Sending/Receiving Diaspora Money? Steward Bank Says You Can Still Do During Lockdown

Four days into the lockdown and there are still questions, lots of them. One of the questions has to do with whether or not sending money to relatives in Zimbabwe is possible during the 21 days. The more important version of that question is whether it’s possible for the relatives to receive the money sent […]

Hypocrisy: Gvt Wants Banks, Mobile Money To Reduce Fees But They Won’t Touch 2% Tax

Transacting is crazy expensive in Zimbabwe. In his communique on measure to ‘stabilise’ the financial sector during the COVID 19 pandemic the RBZ governor talked about the cost of transactions needing to stay the same or go down: The Bank also agreed with the banking sector to suspend increases in charges related to the provision […]

EcoCash Increases Transaction Limits As ZWL Continues To Fall

As Zimbabwe’s currency continues to take a beating, the country’s leading consumer payments platform, EcoCash has revised its ceiling on transactions. These limits are set with the approval of the RBZ. Given that the central bank is in denial as to the actual value of its currency the revisions come short of what the market […]

Money Transfer Startup Founded By Zimbabwean Secures US$5 Million

Digital company, Senditoo is fast becoming one of the dominant fintech start-ups in Africa, after securing a US$5 million line of credit from an international conglomerate. It comes after the financial enterprise, which is headquartered in London, announced it had been in talks to increase customers sending amounts from US$500 to now allowing them to […]

Mahindra Comviva Let’s Go Of Its Payments Interoperability Startup

We were quite enthusiastic when TerraPay, a startup incubated by Mahindra Comviva obtained a license to do cross border payments from South Africa in 2017. We haven’t seen much movement on interoperability of payments across borders since then though. Mahindra Comviva (the company which owns the Mobiquity system which powers EcoCash) has sold its stake […]

Fintech Startups Can Now Apply For EcoBank’s Challenge

Ecobank Group the pan-African banking group, is inviting African fintech entrepreneurs to enter the 3rd edition of the Ecobank Fintech Challenge. The Fintech Challenge gives African start-ups the opportunity to promote their fintech solutions, and potentially partner with Ecobank to roll-out their solutions across Ecobank’s 33 markets in Africa as well as France. The Ecobank […]

BancABC Has A New WhatsApp Chatbot: Ally

Today BancABC has introduced a WhatsApp chatbot to extend banking services to customers on the popular messaging app. They have called their bot Ally. BanABC is calling this the beginning of their digital transformation journey. Together with the bot they have officially unveiled a new look website. The site has a refreshing look indeed and […]

Breaking: EcoCash Tariffs Going Up, RBZ Has Approved

The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe has just approved the adjustment of transaction fees upwards by Zimbabwe’s largest mobile money operator, EcoCash. According to reliable sources this approval has been granted this very afternoon. We are yet to get our hands on the new transaction fee schedule. Our sources have informed that EcoCash will effect the […]

Fintech Startups, Apply For Catapult: Inclusion Africa Competition

[Image Source: Luxembourg House of Financial Technology Facebook] CATAPULT: Inclusion Africa 2020 Bootcamp follows on from the success of the first Catapult Inclusion Africa Bootcamp, organised in November 2018, where 11 selected African Fintechs benefited from a tailor-made programme aligned with the sustainability goals of Luxembourg’s financial centre with the aim for the Fintechs to […]

New EcoCash Merchant Payment UX Is Terrible

UX stands for user experience- just in case. Almost two weeks ago EcoCash warned users that the platform would go offline for 24 hours over the weekend. They said this was to make the system better yada yada yada. Besides the fact that things did not go too well, EcoCash introduced some new user experience […]

EcoFarmer Launches Diaspora Agriculture Finance Plan

EcoFarmer recently announced that they will now be offering a Diaspora Agriculture Finance Plan that allows people in the diaspora to buy farming equipment and inputs for family and friends through Cassava Remit. Whilst the service seems to be unavailable on the Cassava Remit website at the time of writing EcoFarmer ads concerning the service […]

OneMoney Launches New Card Called Platinum Debit Card

During a Customer Appreciation Cocktail event in Bulawayo yesterday, Netone/OneMoney unveiled its newest type of debit card called the Platinum Debit card. The details of the Platitum debit card are still hazy but what we only know now at the moment is that you can enjoy discounts in certain business establishment when you use the […]

[Interview] We Chat With Visa’s GM for Southern Africa: “We Need To Think Global & Act Local” When Deploying Payment Technologies

We sat down with VISA’s General Manager for Southern Africa Mr. Jabu Basopo. We had an interesting conversation that touched on a variety of issues including improving the security of payments, implementation of QR codes in African markets and the lessons that VISA is learning from African payments which one can argue are beginning to […]

EcoCash Will Be Temporarily Shut Down If RBZ Ban Is Not Lifted

In it’s High Court application, EcoCash has highlighted that its mobile money platform will possibly be shut down altogether so that they can complete the process of removing cash-in and cash-out functionality. The Appplicant (EcoCash) is already in the process of implementing the Directive (to end cash-in and cash-out transactions) with the possibility of a […]

Sosholoza’s ‘Any Bank To Any Wallet’ Is Not Really Secure

Accidentally, l figured out something that got me thinking: Is the Sosholoza Any Bank to Any Wallet really secure? Or it’s really “Any Bank to any Wallet?” Yeah it saved me yesterday when their services where down, l had to resort to their “new” baby Sosholoza which really came through. (Thank you Steward Bank).Once upon […]

Sasai Adds 135 Services, It’s Now Like WeChat At Full Throttle

If you had opened Sasai two weeks ago you’d have been disappointed because there were just a couple of services on the platform. But yesterday Cassava Smartech unveiled many services that add up to 135 that are all now accessible in Sasai. From KFC to Alibaba to Spotify to DHL: these are just a few […]