By Hilary Mare
OLD Mutual’s flagship prepaid Visa card that was created for Old Mutual clients will cease to work past September 14, Confidente has learnt
BPC Banking Technologies, a provider of open system payment solutions, four years ago announced the completion of the OMCard Namibia project, which was powered by SmartVista payments technology and in joint collaboration with Bank Windhoek and the payment service provider Payment Express (PEX).
Via the joint collaboration, customers in Namibia were offered services such as person-to-person transfers, POS transactions and no monthly or hidden fees.
Ndangi Katoma, Old Mutual’s Executive for Marketing, Transformation & Customer Strategy told Confidente this week that Old Mutual had decided to end this product offer from 18 July 2018 due to a refocus in strategy.
“Shortly after the launch of the OMcard, our customers began requesting various banking products such as savings products and most notably, loans such as home loans, vehicle loans, and overdrafts. Old Mutual Transactional Service does not have a banking license and was therefore not able to offer these specific types of banking products to our OMcard Customers. Even if this would be considered, it would require significant investment and would not guarantee success given the highly competitive banking industry in Namibia,” Katoma said.
Katoma also highlighted that in line with Old Mutual’s commitment to treat customers fairly, the financial services provider has agreed with Bank Windhoek that OMcard customers will be able to obtain Bank Windhoek products whilst retaining their existing bank accounts.
“This does however mean that the OMcard, and its value proposition, will no longer be offered by Old Mutual. The options available to the affected customers are first, clients have the option to transfer the available balance on their OMcard to a bank account of their choice. Secondly, clients have the option to withdraw the available balance from their OMcard account and thirdly, clients have the option to provide the OMcard call centre with instructions to transfer the available balance of the account to a nominated bank account,” added Katoma.
OMCard, a prepaid Visa card, was designed for Old Mutual’s customers, providing them with a cash-back rewards program and the ability to link up to four additional cards for their family members.
Speculation is also rife that the discontinuation of the card may have been prompted by Old Mutual’s restructuring which was completed recently with primary listing on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) and secondary listings on Stock Exchanges in Namibia, London, Malawi and Zimbabwe.
The group was listed primarily on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) with secondary listings on the JSE.
On the secondary listing day in Namibia last month, Kosmas Egumbo, Group Chief Executive Officer of Old Mutual Namibia, noted that Old Mutual was a corporate that had committed herself to co-create a better and more prosperous Namibia for all and an entity that avails itself to be owned by more Namibians.
“What the listing of Old Mutual Limited means for our business is that we will become a stronger and more focused business. One that is able to provide enhanced performance. The listing of Old Mutual Limited will also open a new chapter for us, as our business will be owned by shareholders who aspire to have a focused and clear emerging market exposure.
“As a business we reaffirm our commitment to the future of this continent, we are committed to enabling positive futures in Namibia. As a Responsible Business we shall demonstrate responsibility to our customer, we shall continue to invest responsibly, we will evidence responsibility to our communities, we are responsible towards our employees and our decisions and actions shall equally evidence our responsibility towards the environment,” he said.
Founded in 1845, Old Mutual has over 16 million customers and approximately 57,000 employees, it provides investment, savings, life assurance, asset management, banking and property and casualty insurance in Africa, Europe, the Americas and Asia.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015