Umoja Switch Extends Services to EA Countries

Tanzania’s network of Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) and Mobile Banking, the ‘Umoja Switch,’ has just gone regional; spreading its digital transactions’ tentacles into three neighbouring countries of Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda.

With more than eight years of operation in the country ‘Umoja Switch,’ according to its Executive, Mr Danford Mbilinyi, is also rapidly expanding and improving its services across the already existing nationwide clientele, in line with ballooning the value of its monetary dealings.

Umoja switch has managed to network 27 banks and currently boasts a total of 4 million transactions through 200 ATMs with all of these being valued at 400 billion/-, a major stride considering that the network started out with 1.2 million transactions that were worth 8 billion/-.

“Umoja cards are acceptable in Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda,” said Mr Mbilinyi, adding that the Union pay card of china will soon be launched in the country through the ‘Umoja Switch’ which means the Union pay cards will also be applicable in Tanzania via ‘Umoja Switch,’ system.

Mr Mbilinyi, who was speaking in Arusha at the end of the week, stated that many other big banks in the country were also considering joining the Umoja Switch set-up, citing that larger and International banks have realised that joining Umoja Switch is of economic advantage.

Other reasons are the fact that customers are pressuring their banks to network with Umoja, striving to make use of the network’s better rates because when it comes to the costs of sharing ATM using Visa or Master Cards, which in other tellers are between 1,000/- and 2,000/- per transaction compared to just 550/- for the Umoja ATMs.

Umoja-Switch was set up to provide electronic payment transfers to its members, but due to tremendous increase of member banks, the consortium changed the structure and became a company, but which is still owned by member banks.

Originally published on DailyNews Tanzania