Sidewalk Kiosks and Call Box Stands Adapted to Provide Mobile Money Services in Cameroon

The launch of Mobile Money services by Express Union in December 2008 is one the major innovations in the Cameroon remittance industry. The service allowed customers to instantly transfer money using their phones and the recipients cashed the money at the operators’ POS. 9 years later, we count a total of 13 Mobile Money services including remittance, payment of utility bills, tuition fees, taxes, etc. and about 5.9 million Mobile Money accounts in Cameroon.

However, in order to guarantee the effective use of these services and consumer satisfaction, the operators must ensure that consumers have easy access to Cash in/Cash out points, implying that market coverage with Mobile Money Cash Points has to be extensive and substantial.

In view of getting closer to the consumers, the Mobile Money operators have reviewed their distribution strategy/channel from opening POS or partnering with Fuel Stations to installing customized Mobile Money kiosks and partnering with Call Box operators on the sidewalks. Today in major Cameroon cities including Douala and Yaounde, we find MTN Mobile Money, Orange Money and EU Mobile kioks as well as Call Box operators providing Orange Money services.

Strategically, these Mobile Money kiosks and Call Box points allow the operators to be operational round the clock, therefore, increasing their transaction volumes and profits. Secondly, the Mobile Money services can be consumed even in the hinterlands where there are less or no fuel stations nor remittance agencies. Thirdly, this move also determines the target clients of the operators who would mostly be businessmen, students and young professional workers. These consumer category are likely very busy and have limited time to spare on queues at the agencies and fuel stations.

At the dawn of these innovations, one obvious observation is the speedy growth and adoption of Mobile Money in Cameroon. As a result, this market expansion/coverage strategy also constitutes a major threat for the traditional remittance operators who either depend on their personal POS or sub-agents’ to reach their target consumers. PUSH and PULL strategies, in this case, might be a good counter option for the traditional operators.


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Express Union Launches New EU Mobile Kiosks in Yaounde and Douala

After the recent restoration of Express Union Mobile’s USSD Code “*050#” by MTN Cameroon, which allows Express Union to resume the provision of its Mobile Money services, it launched its new EU Mobile kiosks in Douala and Yaounde so as to enable its consumers easily have access to liquid cash as well as remit or pay their bills instantly.

This innovation comes after MTN Mobile Money and Orange Money launched their own Mobile Money kiosks in Douala and Yaounde for the payment of bills, remittance, airtime purchase, etc. Worthy of note is also the fact that, the innovation also follows the series of innovations launched by both Express Union (Blue Card and Blue Boss bank cards) and Express Exchange (remittance kits including: remittance stands, remittance meters and remittance applications for smartphones and touchpads) during the 2017 edition of the Promote Business Fair.

Strategically speaking, the kiosks will enable the Express Union not only boost the active usage of its mobile money service, but also allow it counter the sturdy market competition staged by the Orange Money and MTN Mobile Money via their 3800 and 2500 cash points in Cameroon respectively. Already at 700 POS nationwide, the launch of these EU Kiosks would extend their market coverage even more.


Express Union to Launch EU Mobile Franchised Clients in Cameroon

Express Union plans to expand its EU Mobile network in Cameroon through franchised clients. In a bid to reach as many consumers and possible and ensure effective service usage, the franchised clients, located all over the national territory, shall be authorized to provide EU Mobile services.

The franchised clients shall include: restaurant owners, shop owners, traders, supermarkets, off licenses / snack bar owners, etc. They shall provide services such as: remittance, payment of ENEO bills and cash deposit/withdrawals. Commissions for each transaction shall be as high as 40%, whereas no caution shall be required from the prospective franchised client.

These EU Mobile Franchised Clients is a strategic move developed by Express Union to counter Express Exchange’s most recent innovative solutions (remittance kits)… developed to allow its franchised partners provided Express Exchange services all over Cameroon.





Kenya: CBK Grants 12 More Banks to Roll Out Mobile Cash

The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) has increased the number of commercial banks approved to operate the interbank mobile money transfer platform, PesaLink, from 12 to 24.

According to the Kenya Bankers Association, which owns the platform through subsidiary Integrated Payment Services, about million people have been registered on the platform. The KBA, thus, expected all the 42 lenders in operation to roll out the platform in the next few months. The system is set to go live later this month, focusing on person-to-person transactions.

After the operation of the platform, KBA says they’ll launch Phase 2 which will involve partnerships with merchants, government and mobile network operator. An illustration of such partnership is the signing of Sh4 million MoU with Kenya Community Development Foundation. The partnership will see KCDF undertake programmes that engage youth groups on interventions such as mentorship and capacitating the youth with skills based on economic opportunities.  

KCDF executive director Janet Mawiyoo said the funding will go a long way in ensuring the youth, who continue to be marginalized, get requisite skills and values that will enable them become productive and law abiding citizens.  



Zimbabwe: TELECEL Makes More Money despite a Prevailing Cash Shortage Challenge            

TELECEL, realized $12 million in cash-out and cash-in transactions in the last quarter of 2016 thanks cash shortages which characterized Zimbabwe’s prevailing economic situation.

According to TELECEL, the cash shortages favored the growth of mobile banking services such as bank-to-wallet and wallet-to-bank transfers, as customers sought new solutions to the cash challenges.

TELECEL Public Relations and sponsorship Manager, Francis Chimanda, told NewsDay in e-mailed responses that “The major challenge has been the shortage of cash on the market and the solution is in educating our customers to use plastic money and mobile money for transactions, while promoting these by making them easier to access and more affordable”.

In addition, TELECEL was encouraging their clients to subscribe to their Telecash Gold Card, which allows customers to make payments at all ZimSwitch-enabled point-of-sale devices. This strategic move enabled the company to now realize more than half a million a month worth of transactions on merchant payment and the figure is growing on a monthly basis.

While the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (Potraz), in its latest report said mobile money transactions in the last quarter of 2016 (October to December), dropped 35% from the previous quarter, Chimanda said in the near future, they were expecting to significantly grow the number of services and transactions that could be carried out on the Telecash platform.


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