The People’s Own Savings Bank (POSB) has unveiled its prepaid and debit cards which are set to enable its customers to seamlessly transact in both the domestic and international markets through a partnership with Mastercard, a global payment technology company.
The project involves a local leading switching and payments company-Zimswitch which will use its platform to enabled POSB account holders to transact by using their co-badged prepaid and debit Mastercard cards.
The Mastercard debit card is now the default card that POSB account holders can use to transact whether they prefer using United States Dollars (USD) both internationally and/or locally, and local Zimbabwean Dollars (ZWL) using the same card (one card with two transacting currencies).
The prepaid Mastercard card is intended for customers seeking local and international foreign payment solutions, whether they hold a POSB account or not.
All that is required is a national identity card and proof of residence to sign up for the prepaid Mastercard, deposit any amount in USD, and start transacting on the local or international markets
“These cards are a game changer as they enable the bank’s growth,” POSB chief executive officer Garainashe Changunda told company stakeholders at the launch in Harare yesterday evening.
“Through the POSB Mastercard project new customers will be attracted to the bank and existing ones will be excited with the value proposition of the bank. Gone are the days when our customers would go to our competitors to get international services.”
The bank strategy is to now rollout the cards in a phased approach leveraging on its 32 branches nationwide.
“In response to the feedback, we partnered with Mastercard and to offer two cards. The POSB Mastercard debit card, which is linked to the POSB local (ZWL) and United States Dollars (USD) accounts, will give seamless transactions in both currencies using the same card. To make payment, one can easily switch from local currency to foreign currency or vice versa, depending on which currency they want to use for that specific payment,” added Changunda.
The POSB prepaid Mastercard will ensure that the non-account holder groups of society are financially included and can fully participate in various economic activities, even at the global level.
Customers can use prepaid or debit Mastercard cards on local points of sale (POS) machines and ATMs. They can withdraw cash; pay foreign currency denominated bills such as DSTV and Netflix, tuition, and purchase goods and services for their entrepreneurial projects on e-commerce platforms with ease.
“We are delighted to be working with Mastercard, a leading financial technology powerhouse, and POSB, one of Zimbabwe’s largest financial institutions. A lot of hard work and dedication has gone into launching this project. My gratitude goes to all the teams involved and have worked tirelessly to deliver this innovation to both account and non-account holders, enabling them to transact in both local and foreign currency – safely, securely, and seamlessly,” said Zimswitch CEO Zabron Chilakalaka.
The cards come with advanced security features, including a PIN and EMV chip that allows contactless payment (Tap and Go) to ensure that customers transact safely and securely in the virtual environment.
Both the debit and prepaid cards are also equipped with a full complement of digital and easy-to-sign-up features such as card activation or deactivation, PIN reset, balance inquiry, mini-statement, transaction history, full-statement request and block or unblock lost/stolen card.
Additionally, a resolute customer support services team has been put in place to resolve customers’ queries at the earliest possible time should they arise.
“At Mastercard, we are committed to driving financial inclusion and providing digital solutions that help customers make safe and seamless transactions. Over the last decade, there has been considerable progress and a shift in the payment landscape as we know it, as such, we have had to be agile and nimble in our approach and develop innovative solutions that address consumers’ pain points. We are proud to collaborate with POSB to enhance the drive to access financial services, enabling more people to enter the digital economy, and as a leader in the payments technology industry, we will continue to provide our customers with the best solutions and experiences”, saidMark Elliott, Division President at Mastercard, Sub-Saharan Africa.
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