Zimbabwe and regional technology news and updates



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Steward Bank can’t shake it off but recovers remarkably from half year loss

Econet Wireless owned “tech bank” Steward Bank has recorded a loss of $26.3 million for the operating year ended March 2014. Econet Wireless announced this in a media release and the parent company is confident that Steward Bank “would soon turn to profitability”. Although the loss indicates that Steward Bank is not out of the woods […]

Econet says it won’t back down on its demands to banks

Econet Wireless has pronounced a firm refusal to back down on it’s demand on banks to pay a tariff of 30 cents to gain access to its transaction messaging system. This is according to a report in The Herald that quotes Econet Chief Executive Douglas Mboweni reaffirming this stance. According to the article, Mboweni insists […]

EcoCash boasts of having handled transactions worth over $4 billion to date

  Econet Wireless Zimbabwe says that its mobile money transfer service, EcoCash, has handled transactions in excess of $4 billion since the service was introduce in 2011.This was highlighted by Econet’s group CEO Douglas Mboweni to parliamentarians at a familiarisation tour of the company yesterday. This impressive figure was achieved though 170 million transactions handled […]

Investment in Zimbabwe earns Econet Wireless a ZIA Lifetime Award

The Zimbabwe Investment Authority (ZIA) has awarded Econet Wireless Zimbabwe a Lifetime Award in the ICT sector, in recognition of the investment the company has made into the country. ZIA, the state agency responsible for facilitating investment into Zimbabwe, announced the award at its 2013 ZIA Investor Awards in Harare this week. According to ZIA, […]

Econet CEO on why they suspended EcoCash transfers to other networks

Almost 3 months ago, Econet suddenly announced a suspension of EcoCash transfers to other mobile local mobile networks; Telecel and NetOne. We suspected ofcourse that this was a move to encourage people to ditch their Telecel and NetOne lines to access the mobile money service. Or at least a move to have sons and daughters […]

Press release: New services begin to drive Econet growth says CEO

New services such as EcoCash, broadband, and EcoFarmer have begun to drive Econet Wireless Zimbabwe’s growth as its traditional voice revenues are maturing. Speaking at the presentation of the half year results for August 2013, Econet Wireless CEO Douglas Mboweni said the company’s focus was to speed up innovations aimed at creating new sources of […]

Econet Wireless Zimbabwe full year profits down by 16%

Today, Econet Wireless Zimbabwe, the company that has the lion’s share of the mobile telephony & broadband business in Zimbabwe, announced at a press briefing their annual financial results the period ending February 2013.

EcoCash & Stanbic integrate. CEO Mboweni comments on ZimSwitch integration

We’re just from a press conference where Econet Wireless and Stanbic Bank announced the integration of Econet’s mobile money transfer platform, EcoCash, with Stanbic’s banking system allowing EcoCash subscribers to transfer money from and to their Stanbic accounts. Selected branches of Stanbic will also act as EcoCash Super Agents allowing EcoCash agents and customers to do EcoCash transactions.

Press Release: CBZ becomes first bank to connect to EcoCash

CBZ Bank, Zimbabwe’s largest bank, has become the first bank in the country to get a direct connection to the EcoCash service from Econet Wireless. Customers of the bank who have an EcoCash ‘eWallet’ can put money into the account using their cell phones. They can also take money from their eWallets and deposit it directly into a CBZ bank account.

Econet interim results: US $78 million in after tax profits

We just came from an analysts briefing in Harare where Econet Wireless Zimbabwe presented their interim results ending 31 August 2012. We live tweeted the briefing on our @Techzim stream. The one thing clear strategically at the briefing was the role of EcoCash in the new Econet. In fact, the CEO Douglas Mboweni, even said […]

Econet Solar Green Kiosks: the launch

We attended the Econet Solar Green Kiosk launch today which we posted about earlier. The launch took place at the Econet HQ in Harare. The mayor of Harare, Muchadeyi Masunda, officially launched the project. Apart from the main issues we published in the morning, here are a few more details we learnt at the launch: […]

Econet owed $85m by NetOne & TelOne. About sharing infrastructure, USF

Today, the Econet CEO, Douglas appeared before the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Media, Information and Communication Technology on ICT. The appearance was for discussion on various issues ranging from tariffs, infrastructure sharing, future investment in telecoms and network rollout amoung other issues. We (and now you) have been lucky enough to receive a detailed report in […]

Trustco seeks to have Econet directors jailed for 90 days over Ecolife

The Ecolife case, now a thorn in Econet’s side, is not over yet. The main headline on the Herald front page today reads “Econet bosses face arrest”. The story basically says Trustco is mad that Econet is ‘getting away with murder’ and they are seeking, through the courts, to have Econet chairman Tawanda Nyambirai, deputy FD Roy Chimanikire and CEO & director Douglas Mboweni jailed for 90 days.

More detail from Econet’s results (ARPU, EcoCash, Ecolife, Social…)

As you may already know, Econet announced its full year audited financials yesterday. We posted a bit about it yesterday but there wasn’t much besides the impressive profit figures the telecoms firm continues to post. Today we have more details; information on the company’s plans this year, their operation challenges, what they are doing to overcome them, EcoCash uptake, Ecolife, Average revenue per user, their gratitude to POTRAZ and other such.

Econet to spend 1 million Euro on broadband and voice optimisation

Mobile network monitoring and optimization solutions provider, Astellia, announced today that they have signed a EUR 1 million agreement with Econet Wireless Zimbabwe. According to the announcement, Econet will deploy an Astellia solution to monitor network performance for its mobile broadband and voice services and will also have a team of Astellia consultants to provide expert support.

The EcoCash launch event

Last night, we attended the official launch for Econet’s EcoCash mobile money service. Even though the event started some 40 minutes late, there was a series of polished presentations, the highlight being the Zimbabwe Reserve Bank Governor’s participation as guest of honour.

Econet’s move into green energy, a welcome development for under-powered Africa

We attended the launch of Econet Energy, a renewable energy initiative by Econet yesterday. Through the initiative Econet is making a move into solar energy in a bid to guarantee always-available power supply to its telecommunications infrastructure and subscribers.

ICT 2010 Achievers Awards Businessman of the Year: Douglas Mboweni

Mr Mboweni is an exemplary Zimbabwean businessman that has shown strong entrepreneurial orientation in finding creative solutions to the challenges of operating and developing a business that delivers convenience to the people of Zimbabwe during a time of considerable economic challenges.

When Econet’s 3G Will Open To All Subscribers

Since Econet launched 3G on it’s network last year in August, the services has had more than a few problems. First it was that 3G itself was only limited to the greater Harare.

Econet Opens New Call Centre As Subscriber Base Crosses The 4 Million Mark

Today, Econet Wireless Zimbabwe opened a new call centre in Graniteside, Harare. The large call center (see pictures below), which has the capacity to handle more than 15,000 customer calls an hour was described by Econet CEO, Mr. Douglas Mboweni as “the biggest and most sophisticated in the country”.

Mr. Douglas Mboweni took the opportunity today to announce that the mobile operator’s subscriber base had passed the 4 million mark and that this exponential growth in subscriber numbers had spurred the need for the larger and more modern call center.

Econet to Commission Fibre-Optic System By March

conet CEO Douglas Mboweni, said today Econet will commission its fibre-optic cable system in the major cities by March this year. ‘Major cities’ here probably refers to Harare and maybe Bulawayo. He made the revelation in an update of the network upgrade work that has been going on since the start of 2009. He confirmed that the upgrade work is nearing completion and a bundle of services should start rolling out in the next few weeks.

Explaining why it took more than a year to complete the work he said:

The process of raising money, ordering equipment, and bringing in contractors to build and install equipment takes time. In our case, we were not only expanding capacity but also replacing obsolete equipment that had not been replaced in 10 years. It was like starting from scratch.