As the world grapples with the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic, three e-payment platforms in Ethiopia, namely Amole, HelloCash and M-BIRR urge customers to use their technology to avoid crowds in banks.
Currently the three e-payment platforms with mobile money and e0coomerce applications have over five million combined customers stand to benefit from this initiative. “We have a role to continue supporting our communities, the economy and stimulating growth. The best support we can give to the community as our economy starts to slow down is to save our customers money and keep social distancing using electronic transaction to protect the spread of the corona virus. We have been in crises before, however, this virus does not discriminate, it’s an attack against humanity but if we pull together as a community, even in this environment, we will win together,” the three companies said in their joint statement.
It is stated that Amole’s 2.1 million customers will benefit from free transaction fees on all services such as Person-to-Person (P2P) transfers. To encourage “Social Distancing” and online transactions, Amole is offering 5% instant cashback on any purchases at over 8,000 participating businesses including ecosystem partners (eCommerce and Mobile Apps) that accept Amole starting from March 26, 2020 until April 30th, 2020.
These measures are additional to the zero-rating of bank to mobile wallet and mobile wallet to bank transactions in order to increase the usage of Amole digital omni-channels as opposed to cash in order to reduce the risk of transmitting the virus.
For its part, the M-BIRR service will refund all fees for money transfer, bill payment, and electronic purchases of goods and services to all registered customers throughout the month of April. Bank notes are a well-known risk for transmitting viruses, as warned by the World Health Organization. This initiative is meant to drive increased use of safer, touchless payments in Ethiopia via the M-BIRR service. In addition, by refunding money transfer fees, Ethiopians can use M-BIRR to send much needed cash to impacted family and friends. Recipients can collect cash from over 14,000 locations in both urban and rural areas throughout the country.
For our part, the HelloCash service is offering a free sanitary mask to all HelloMarket (Helloomarket.com) online orders from March 28, 2020 till the end of April. We are currently facing unprecedented time and we are taking unprecedented measures to protect HelloCash customers. In this regard, we avail all our ancillary Hello Services within the HelloCash ecosystem to allow end-to-end contact less and cash less transactions to take place. Most importantly, to educate, incentivise and ultimately protect our customer from unnecessary outcomes from the coronavirus.
This announcement represents an important collaboration between the financial institutions and technology providers who offer these services across Ethiopia. Together, these parties are co-funding this initiative to help combat the effects of COVID-19.