Three million Zimbabweans who use the EcoCash Wallet can now also operate a savings account.
Econet Wireless has launched a new service called EcoCashSave, which allows an EcoCash customer to move money from their eWallet to an interest bearing account in a matter of seconds.
Whilst banks generally do not give interest on deposits of less than $800 the EcoCashSave deposit account will give interest even on $1 as long as the money has been there for 30 days.
Opening an EcoCashSave account is also very simple, as a customer can set up the account on their phone themselves by following a few simple instructions. The EcoCash system is the one that sets up the account, and assigns an account number automatically.
You also do not have to complete any forms if you already have an EcoCash wallet, neither do you need to see an agent, even though agents can help you. Once your account is open, you can move money in and out as you like without any charges whatsoever.
The money held in EcoCashSave accounts is held by any of the banks that are integrated to the EcoCash system. It is also possible to move money from an EcoCashSave account to a normal bank account and vice versa, without incurring any charges.
The EcoCashSave account is aimed at millions of people in the country who until now could not open bank accounts, because the amount of money they deal with is considered too small by banks. It is also intended for the informal business sector, including street vendors, to have access to banking services.
Employers can now also use EcoCashSave for paying wages and salaries. EcoCash has also set up a payroll services, that allows an employer to send money to any number of people using a cell phone or computer.
A construction company for instance that pays weekly wages can use EcoCashPayroll to pay weekly wages into the EcoCashSave accounts of its employees.
Once they receive the money, they can keep some of it and earn interest, and make bill payments whenever they like, or they can go to an EcoCash agent and get cash.