A few weeks back we hinted that Ecocash had advanced towards the ZESA payment agreement. As expected ZESA Holdings says it has added the Ecocash mobile money platform to start trading the electricity tokens. This deal will mutually benefit the parastatal’s converged telecommunications unit Powertel and Econet as it will increase both companies’ revenue flows.
In 2014,the government denied Econet’s proposal to become a vendor of prepaid electricity citing that the third party vending facility was reserved for parastatals. Econet said it could solve the problem of tampering with pre-paid meters that is costing Zesa millions of dollars in revenue every month.
By Kudakwashe Pembere
Two years on, the parastatal reconsidered its position to involve Ecocash as a third party vendor to sell prepaid electricity tokens. The parastatal added Ecocash to the basket of mobile operators considering the mobile money platform’s large subscription base which will come in handy in assisting Powertel in collecting revenue.
In an emailed response to TechnoMag, ZESA Spokesperson Fullard Gwasira said the country’s most subscribed mobile money platform is now trading.
Ecocash head Natalie Jabangwe could not be reached for comment as she was in a meeting.
“In a meeting. Call Lovemore, our press officer. He will give you an update but we also have a formal press release in a few days,” she said.
While NetOne was already selling these tokens, Gwasira noted that Telecel Zimbabwe will start trading these tokens soon.
“Telecel will start trading,” he added.
In March 2013 Government appointed Powertel as the aggregator for prepaid electricity because of its strategic role on ICTs and Innovations in the Zesa. The entire prepaid electricity service is aggregated through Powertel working closely with the wholesaler ZETDC and the appointed partners.
Through Powertel’s E-Vending system, 95 percent of prepaid electricity revenue has been collected.
“The service is accessed over the counter, Point of sale, mobile platforms, applications, internet platforms, VISA payment platforms among other platforms,” said Gwasira.