Here’s why it costs so much to transfer money from EcoCash to OneMoney or Telecash(and why we partially apologize)
Granting a bigger picture and sticking to a point..
About two weeks ago we published an article on Econet’s crazy cross-wallet ZIPIT transfer charges, charging 98% of a transaction to transfer money NetOne’s OneMoney, while OneMoney only charged 5% for the exact same transfer. We said that the main reason for this seems to be EcoCash just wanting to keep people in the EcoCash ecosystem, but while that’s not necessarily wrong, some more digging brought us to a more logical reason, and one that we felt we had to share.
So why does EcoCash charge so much for ZIPIT transfers?
Well the big reason for this is one some of you may be familiar with if you know the M.O. for a lot of Econet subsidiaries: outsourcing and using international tech. To put it in simple terms, EcoCash uses a product called Postilion from a company called ACI Worldwide for all it’s transfers and integrations. They’ve been using it for pretty much as long as they’ve been running and Postilion has granted them advantages such as faster integration with banks and (until recently) reliable performance. However, Postilion and ACI Worldwide are not Zimbabwean, and have always charged EcoCash for their services with US Dollar, which seems to be different from OneMoney and Telecash who use ZimSwitch Services (ZSS) that seem to be more friendly to local economic conditions. With the recent move to the national switch however, EcoCash has seemingly had to work under terms that allow them to work withing both Postilion and ZSS’ conditions, including likely some fees on both ends, which of course, leaves the company bleeding more money than they would like to, hence the ludicrous prices for ZIPIT transfers. Chances are EcoCash could likely still reduce some of these costs (I mean the difference between 98% and 5% is insane) but perhaps the difference wouldn’t be by much and hence the company will have to figure out something fast. And in case you are wondering why EcoCash doesn’t just drop Postilion, well that would essentially mean rebuilding EcoCash as we know it, and that would be suicide for their product and a cause for serious problems as EcoCash is still pretty much a dominant form of trade in the country.
Why are we apologizing then?