MTN customers can now finally use the much anticipated MTN Mobile Money transfer service following the commercial launch of the product today. Upon registration, users will be able to send and receive cash using their mobile phones.
The introduction of the product to the market brings to a close a comprehensive test period that saw the product undergo a rigorous five months market test and subsequent approval by Bank of Uganda. The planning and development process which included software development , extensive market research, planning, vendor selection, and careful product roll-out implementation was intended to provide a secure and reliable service that MTN customers can trust to deliver an innovative world class service.
Officiating at the launch of MTN Mobile Money, the newly appointed Minister of Information Communication and Technology (ICT), Hon. Aggrey Awori lauded MTN’s innovation and ability to always bring to the Ugandan market products and services that are relevant to the people. He reiterated the endorsement given by the Bank of Uganda Governor Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile who last week, during a visit to the MTN offices, endorsed and gave regulatory approval to MTN to carry out the money transfer service. Awori commended MTN for pursuing a policy of constantly innovating in order to provide products and services that meet the needs of the people. Emphasizing technology as an essential tool for economic growth, he applauded MTN in working with the government to contribute to national development.
MTN Mobile Money is the first such service in Uganda and is expected to revolutionalise money transfers and payments through the use of mobile phones. The service is expected to tap into rural areas where formal money services hardly penetrate and are deemed to be out of reach of the common man.
In remarks made during the official launch of the Mobile Money product, MTN Chief Executive Officer Noel Meier said MTN had carried out all the necessary market tests required to ensure a reliable and secure service to MTN customers.
“We know that the market has eagerly waited for this service and we’re proud to be the first to bring it to Uganda . We believe this product will help our customers transact as they go about their daily life and the Bank of Uganda is satisfied that adequate measures have been put in place to protect people’s money” he said.
“Our initial service is simple and user friendly and customers will find it very easy to interact with. However this will progressively be upgraded to include other functionalities as the market demands.”
MTN is partnering with Stanbic Bank which will hold the MTN Mobile Money account. The bank’s Managing Director, Philip Odera was enthusiastic about being part of the initiative.
“Stanbic Bank Uganda is very pleased to act as the collection bank for this product. Our country-wide footprint will give MTN Mobile Money users an added advantage as they will reach out to their counterparts in all corners of Uganda backed by our branch network.” said Odera.
He further clarified that there are no charges applicable on this account. However Odera also made it clear that MTN Mobile Money users will not be able to transfer more that UGX.1 million per day or maintain a balance of more than UGX.1 million on their Mobile Money accounts at any one time.”
MTN Uganda appointed Oscillyte Ltd., a consultancy firm to define the mobile money strategy and provide the project management expertise to bring the MTN Mobile Money service to market. Oscillyte provides specialist strategy, marketing and product development skills and knowledge to organisations active in the telecommunications market and mobile in particular.
ABOUT THE MTN GROUP
Launched in 1994, the MTN Group is a multinational telecommunications group, operating in 21 countries in Africa, Asia and the Middle East . The MTN Group is listed on the JSE Securities Exchange in South Africa under the share code: “MTN”. As at 30 September 2008, MTN recorded 80,7 million subscribers across its operations in Afghanistan, Benin, Botswana, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Cyprus, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Guinea Republic, Iran, Liberia, Nigeria, Republic of Congo (Congo Brazzaville), Rwanda, South Africa, Sudan, Swaziland, Syria, Uganda, Yemen and Zambia. The MTN Group is a global sponsor of the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ and has exclusive mobile content rights for Africa and the Middle East.