03 August 2018 | Bankwese

Bank while you chat on WhatsApp with South Africa's Absa

South Africa’s Absa Group on Wednesday officially launched Whatsapp banking, in its latest push to become a digitally-led African bank, with more than 10 000 customers already registered to date since early July.

The service faces competition from WeChat, China’s biggest Internet-based mobile messaging platform which launched in Africa in 2013 and offers an array of services including money transfers, prepaid electricity and airtime purchases.

Absa chief executive Maria Ramos has drawn up an ambitious growth strategy to regain market share in retail banking at home and double sales across the continent from 6% to 12% after the bank’s separation from Barclays PLC.

To achieve this, the group is adapting to changes in customer behaviour that requires banking to be available anytime, anywhere and accessible wherever the customer is.