EBank gets licence, plans 2014 rollout

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WINDHOEK – After a rigorous process of banking compliance review and systems evaluation, EBank Limited was finally issued with a banking licence by the Bank of Namibia.

“The Bank of Namibia wishes to announce that a certificate of authorization to establish a banking institution in Namibia has been granted to EBank Limited, effective from 28 May 2014. The public is further notified that EBank Limited is now permitted to engage in banking activities with any person in Namibia, especially soliciting deposits from the general public,” said the Bank of Namibia’s Ndangi Katoma in a statement released on May 30.

According to EBank’s chairperson, Monica Kalondo, EBank aims to ensure real economic enablement for all Namibians through the provision of inclusive banking services. “We plan to offer our clients relevant and affordable banking solutions that are accessible anywhere and anytime in an easy, safe and smart way. Through EBank’s entry into the market we hope to positively contribute to the Namibian banking and broader financial services landscape. Applying various technological innovations and a unique distribution model, EBank will introduce a truly inclusive, client-focused banking model,” said Kalondo.

She added that EBank holds as its primary objectives the intention to overcome the physical, financial and emotional barriers that continue to limit access and full utilization of banking services by many Namibians.

Kalondo further commented: “We believe that our banking model will challenge established norms through the utilization of cutting edge technology and communication mediums. We will not settle for the ordinary and believe that EBank will be a catalyst in revolutionising the banking sector for the benefit of all Namibians.”

She added: “The issuing of this licence is a key requisite to our next set of critical milestones. We can now focus our attention on concluding EBank’s integration into NAMCLEAR and other key strategic partnerships that will enable us to deliver a consumer relevant range of banking solutions. We anticipate to launch and roll out our range of banking solutions within the 2014 calendar year.”

EBank was founded by Pointbreak Namibia, a Namibian investment and wealth management company, and TYME Capital, a banking technology provider to MTN.

Pointbreak has approximately N$4.2 billion in assets under management and offers investment and wealth management services to private clients as well as to corporate and institutional markets. Pointbreak was initially established as a private equity company and remains active in this sector through its involvement in Stimulus, a Namibian black-controlled investment company with an unlisted investment portfolio totalling N$381 million.

A recent study indicated that about 40 percent of Namibians remain unbanked, meaning that they do not have access to banking services. However, it still takes about half of those people who are banked more than an hour to get to a bank. In stark contrast there are more mobile phone connections in Namibia than people.

Namibia’s low population density and vast distances have opened a niche for alternative distribution channels such as mobile connectivity as a key factor in driving financial inclusion.

By Staff Reporter