Zimbabwean mobile operator, Econet Wireless has launched its mobile money transfer service, Eco-Cash.
Eco-Cash officially was launched on 30 September 2011.
According to SWRadioAfrica, Econet, which has a subscriber base of more than 5 million customers, launched this service last week. Information on its website says the mobile cash transfer facility does not mean a subscriber has to open a bank account.
The new service will allow users to send and receive money, buy airtime, and make other payments using their mobile phones. Customers using EcoCash can also move money across different Zimbabwean mobile networks.
Econet has deployed 500 Eco-cash agents and has forged partnerships with about 200 post offices and 300 independent agents.
According to a media statement, “With Eco-cash from Econet Wireless, you can now send and receive money quickly and easily from cellphone to cellphone. It’s a service that is so secure; you won’t have to worry about the safety of your money. Receiving money is just as easy. When money comes your way, you will receive a text messaging advising you on amount sent to you, the name of sender, and the balance in your eco-cash account. You then simply go to the nearest eco-cash agent within your area to collect the money.”
Simon Muchemwa, a Harare correspondent, said the new service is expected to revolutionize banking in a country where a large percentage of people are excluded from the formal financial sector.
“In Kenya alone last year, some 14 million people transferred US$7 billion across their country via mobile money transfer. With this service, people are effectively being given ATM cards without them ever having to open a real bank account. This money transfer concept will help many urban based Zimbabweans to support relatives in rural areas.”