By Byron Mutingwende
Popular mobile money service, EcoCash, has integrated with MBCA Bank Limited, bringing to 11 the number of banks directly integrated with the mobile financial transacting system.
A company spokesman yesterday confirmed the integration, saying the development was set to offer EcoCash and MBCA customers more convenience, choice and flexibility.
“We are delighted to integrate with MBCA Bank and are happy for the convenience and flexibility this brings to our customers who bank with MBCA” the spokesman said.
“Our customers will now enjoy the convenience of moving funds between their MBCA bank account and their EcoCash wallet, and vice versa, at any time, anywhere”, said the spokesman.
EcoCash, the market leader in its sector with over 98% market share, according to the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe’s latest industry figures, has to date integrated with Steward Bank, CBZ, Stanbic, Agribank, NMB, BancABC, ZB Bank, the POSB, CABS, FBC and MBCA.
The company spokesman said integration work with the few remaining banks was at an advanced stage.
“Work on integrating the remaining few banks is going well, and I am pleased to say all our customers will soon be enjoying integrated financial services shortly”, the spokesman said.
The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe – which supervises Ecocash – has been quoted as saying the adoption of mobile money services and electronic payment platforms in Zimbabwe had resulted in $11 billion worth of transactions being handled electronically over the nine months from January to September 2017. A total of 80% of those transactions are said to have been done via mobile money, a key driver of financial inclusion in the economy.
The spokesman said MBCA’s customers could now take advantage of the several transaction options available on EcoCash – including utility and other bill payments and an assortment of merchant payment services as well as individual funds transfers and airtime credit payments.
The integration of EcoCash with MBCA Bank comes less than a month after EcoCash moved to further widen customer access to its financial transacting platform by introducing ‘Swipe Into EcoCash’, a convenient option for EcoCash’s customers to fund their wallets from any bank account linked to ZimSwitch.
The innovation, announced by EcoCash in Harare recently, gives EcoCash customers the choice to move their funds directly from any ZimSwitch-linked bank account, onto their EcoCash wallet by simply swiping on any Steward Bank point of sale (POS) device.
EcoCash, which is run by Econet Wireless’ Cassava business unit, has been leading the mobile money market in Zimbabwe since 2011.
In recognition of its ‘EcoCash Diaspora’ service, last week EcoCash scooped the Internet of Things(IoT), Product and Service of the Year award for 2017 at AfricaCom, in Cape Town. At the same event, Econet Wireless won the Fintech Innovation Award of the year.
AfricaCom is the largest annual technology, telecoms and media event on the African calendar.