NetOne, BancABC in $10m partnership

HARARE - Mobile network operator NetOne has partnered BancABC in a $10 million deal that will see the company’s subscribers buying smart phones over a 12-month period.

The State-owned NetOne’s acting chief executive, Brian Mutandiro, said the company’s over 6,5 million subscribers will have an option to buy a variety of smart phones from international brands such as Apple, Samsung, Huawei, Nokia, Alcatel, ZTE and Lenovo among others.

To buy a smart phone, customers will get a loan from BancEasy, a BancABC subsidiary, which they will use to pay for the device.

“The devices will come with complimentary free OneFusion airtime for 12 months with customers getting a maximum of OneFusion $20 per month, depending on the device one chooses to purchase,” Mutandiro said.

In most markets across the world, mobile network operators partner with smart phones manufacturers to allow subscribers to get phones for free and only pay for airtime over specified periods.

Markets experts said the move by NetOne would result in as many Zimbabweans as possible migrating to the new data-driven mobile environment.

Mutandiro noted that subscribers will need to bring payslip, proof of residence, national identification documents and a letter from the employer to access these packages.

Meanwhile, Zimbabwe’s second largest mobile network operator by subscriber base yesterday also launched a micro mobile insurance product, OneCover, which offers funeral assurance to its customers.

Micro-insurance enables low-income people, mostly in the developing world, avoid the debt traps that often imperil their livelihoods and even their lives.

Experts say micro-insurance is also particularly important for those in the informal economy, who are usually underserved by mainstream commercial and social insurance schemes.

“OneCover — underwritten by First Mutual Life (FML) — seeks to drive financial inclusion through affordable plans, ease access, leveraging on the reputation and the market share of NetOne Cellular,” Mutandiro said.

The insurance product’s premiums and claims payments will be made through NetOne’s mobile financial service platform.

“Like any other insurance, OneCover has a waiting period, were except for accidental death, the waiting period for all plans will be three months on the main life assured. There shall be six months waiting period on other adult dependents, non-biological children, biological children above 23 years attained and subsequent spouses,” the NetOne boss added.

FML chief operations manager Peter Shoniwa said his organisation seriously takes financial inclusion issues hence its decision to partner NetOne.

“FML, which has been around for more than 100 years, would want to ensure that people do not have to travel long distances to access financial products. Through this partnership, we will be able to distribute our insurance products through NetOne offices and technology offered by the mobile firm,” he said.

Post a comment

Readers are kindly requested to refrain from using abusive, vulgar, racist, tribalistic, sexist, discriminatory and hurtful language when posting their comments on the Daily News website.
Those who transgress this civilised etiquette will be barred from contributing to our online discussions.
- Editor

Your email address will not be shared.