Guiding consumers since 2009

The banks they are a changing

By Staff Writer
The banks they are a changing

The global financial crisis has led a sea change in opinion on what is the right way forward.

While the revolutionaries are being infiltrated on the streets, an evolutionary pressure has definitely developed that will usher in the real changes that will take place in the banking system.

Here in South Africa we don't have riots on the street and many folk sit complacently with their bank accounts and the multifarious charges that they attract.

But the banks they are a changing.

The Mzansi account initiative was introduced by the government to provide a low cost account that worked with modern electronic methods.

Enabling the low waged and the unbanked to become part of the formal banking system. The Mzansi account offers a basic bank account and a standard set of charges that is easy to use and to understand.

According to news reports since the inception of the Mzansi account scheme more than six million South Africans have opened one of these accounts.

iAfrica reported on this and noted the comments of deputy Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene.

He said 'This vindicates our position that historically disadvantaged members of our population can be harnessed into a potentially viable market'.

The middle and top end of the market has already been harnessed into the banking system and this bottom end represents the last of the fresh market share.

The Mzansi account is carried by law by the large banks.

However there is a new entrant in the market. Capitec Bank 

Previously perceived as a micro lender and only for the bottom end of the market, Capitec bank is one of the few banks in the world that is not only expanding but making a healthy profit also.

The Times reports that 'while US motor bosses were flying in private jets to pick up their bailout packages, executives and staff at a lesser known South African company, Capitec Bank, were flying economy'.

This kind of attitude is a big factor in Capitec increasing their headline earnings by 41 percent in the last financial year. They have gained 464 000 new clients in the last year and are opening branches constantly, about one every ten days is expected this year.

The fact of the matter is that the Capitec Global One account is probably the best value for money account on the market at the moment. They have a flat and easy to understand charge structure and pay interest on all positive balances.

They have suffered under a perception that they are only for the low end of the market but are starting to make inroads in the upper end of the market.

Capitec fully expects to make the SA banking sector hold the 'Big 5' banks with them joining the other giants of the sector.

If Capitec keeps up its strategy of targeted products that really are the best of their class they can turn their expectations into reality. Register with Justmoney to stay up to date with our product reviews.

 

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