By Hillary Munedzi
The Paynow seamless payment system will solve the high poverty levels besetting the economy, with 73% of the population earning not more than US$100.00 per month according to the Finscope Consumer Survey.
Vulnerability indicators, according to the 2022 Finscope Consumer Survey point to more hardships for the majority of Zimbabweans, with 68% of the population having gone without money and needing to make alternative plans to meet daily needs, while 61% had to skip meals due to lack of money for food.
Total revenue in the eCommerce market amounted to US$99.7 million, accounting for 56.7 percent of US$202 million total digital revenue. In 2021, total revenue from eCommerce rose to $341 million dominated by beverages, followed by electronics and fashion. The smallest contributor to eCommerce revenue was media at just over US$6 million in 2021.
“Paynow has made significant strides in the provision of a seamless multi-payment platform characterized by enhanced user experience. The platform has promoted intrepidity whilst reducing roadblocks to seamless payments. These developments have taken place in the background of a myriad of challenges that eCommerce in Zimbabwe has experienced over the years.
“This service has now been extended to previously marginalized segments of society through the recently launched USSD platform *828#. This is highly commendable and resonates well with the country’s National Financial Inclusion Strategy II,” said Thulani Chitopo, an Economist from the Ministry of Industry and Commerce.
Mobile money and digital financial services are breaking the barriers and facilitating access to the usage of financial services outside brick and mortar.
Positive uptake of digital financial services by women, youth, MSMEs, and rural populations points to opportunities to increase financial inclusion through digital financial services.
Supply-side data indicates increased uptake of formal financial services as measured by the number of bank accounts and the number of low cost-cost accounts which increased from 1.49 million and 1.20 million in 2016 to 7.76 million and 4.83 million respectively as of 31 March 2021.
“To build the foundations of eCommerce to be viable to lessen the friction and reduce the cost of trading to enable new business models, today we celebrate our road to success. Eight years later, we are still having a burning desire to do what we originally set out to do. We trust you have found in us partners who are capable, trustworthy, reliable, and with an approach to both risk and innovation that complements the critical work over the years. We have to navigate successive waves and significant regulatory changes.
“Innovation, agility, and inclusivity are the values that keep the dream alive even in uncertain times by working with our partners comprising governments, banks, mobile financial service providers, billers, and merchants. We perceive our job and our purpose to lubricate the system and remove friction for two of the most important stakeholders right at the end of the chain – the consumer and the merchant.
“To this end, by being empathetic to the stakeholders at the very end of the chain and promoting interpretability, we have now 14 000 eCommerce merchants from every sector in the economy who trust Paynow as their payment and eCommerce partner,” said Vusi Ndebele, Managing Director at Paynow.