MASERU – Small, Medium and Micro Enterprise (SMMEs) in the country are set to benefit from the newly-introduced mobile banking feature by the Lesotho Post Bank.
The bank has spent more than M20 million to put the product together and will be hoping to get returns through its services.
Dubbed “Khetsi”, the new and unique feature which was launched this week comes with a little more flexibility, allowing its clients to pay utility bills such as electricity, airtime, merchant payment as well as other important bills, including school fees.
Clients can also deposit and or withdraw money from Post Bank ATMs through cardless transactions and can send and receive money from any mode of transaction.
Khetsi also allows for micro and community savings for its users.
That means the struggles could soon be over for people who normally end up losing huge sums of money through some unnecessary delinquencies in their stokfels and Mpate-Sheleng groups as they can now do all transactions through the new product.
Clients can also pay insurances at Metropolitan Lesotho and Sentebale insurance groups through this platform.
While all its users are likely to enjoy the new product, it is the Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs) that are mostly targeted by the bank through accessible Nano loans that are created to support the growth of their businesses.
These loans, however, can also be accessed by anybody using the product and not only SMME holders.
Loans range from M10.00 up to M500.00 depending on one’s needs.
To access the loan, one does not have to be banking with Lesotho Post Bank but will have to be fully registered with a good track record in using Khetsi.
Lesotho Post Bank Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Molefi Leqhaoe revealed this week that one does not have to go to the bank in order to access the small loans, instead people can use their smart phones at their own convenient time to apply and receive loans.
“You do not have to come to us. All you have to do is to use your smart phone to apply and our system will then calculate everything and decide as to how much you qualify for depending on how long you have been in the system.
“Starting from Friday, services will be available at all our branches across the country while we are also working tirelessly to have agents stationed in different areas for the service,” Leqhaoe said on Monday during the introduction of the new product.
While the bank is looking to make good returns through Khetsi, the CEO clarified that there will not be any interest fees on the small loans citing that only a small amount of monthly administration fee will be charged.
“In that way, we are expecting our clients to be trustworthy in terms of paying back the loans. We are mostly targeting the SMMEs such as street vendors to benefit more from the loans because we realised that sometimes their businesses suffer as a result of lack of finances.
“But things will be different now because they will be able to access loans any time their businesses are struggling and then pay back at the later stages,” Leqhaoe added, emphasising also that savings can also be done on the same platform.
Those who do not pay will be dealt with accordingly by the bank.
Currently, Khetsi will only operate domestically but could soon cross borders, depending on how it has been received locally. Any phone user is eligible but the application can also be downloaded from google play store and windows store depending on the type of a phone that is being used.