Bank Zero ready to take on Discovery Bank and TymeBank

Bank Zero is confident that its increased functionality, competitive fee structure, and easy-to-understand offering will be enough to compete in an increasingly crowded market.

This is according to Lezanne Human, cofounder and executive director at Bank Zero, who said their innovative banking offer will include low costs and high interest for savings.

The bank will be run entirely on a smartphone app that the company has built, removing the need for traditional banking structures like head offices or branches.

Bank Zero has partnered with Mastercard to offer its clients a “new generation of card”, too, with “cutting-edge security and powerful features”.

Clients will be able to draw money at any ATM or pay-point of its partners.

The value proposition sounds enticing, but over the last few weeks Discovery Bank and TymeBank executives used the same sales pitch to promote their new services.

Bank Zero, Discovery Bank, and TymeBank are all offering a digital-only banking service with low fees, increased functionality, and high interest rates.

Just for good measure, FNB recently launched its fully digital eWallet eXtra account which can be opened and used on mobile devices.

The new smartphone-based banking market has therefore become very crowded very quickly, which means that consumers will be spoiled for choice.

Bank Zero confident of success

Bank Zero started alpha testing among its employees in October after it successfully integrated with the national payments system of the SARB.

Beta testing, which involves actual external customers, will start towards the end of Q1 2019, with a full commercial launch around mid-2019.

Considering that Bank Zero will only launch months after its main competitors, it raises the question as to what its competitive advantage will be.

Human told MyBroadband that Bank Zero’s superior functionality and its easy-to-understand offering are some of the bank’s biggest selling points.

“We have quite a few unique and powerful solutions to some real banking problems customers struggle with,” she said.

She added that their service will enable businesses to do their banking “so much better”,

Human said Bank Zero’s highly competitive fee structure will also make their offering attractive, even though it is not their “main thing”.

Bank Zero benefits

Human provided a list of 8 core benefits which Bank Zero customers will enjoy.

  • Total control and transparency – individual or business clients will always know what is happening in their account.
  • Innovative functionality focusing on solving real problems, as opposed to just nice-to-haves.
  • A very competitive fee structure.
  • It has a mutual bank construct which allows customers to become shareholders.
  • Connectedness – similar to social media concept – and the ability to create communities or groups.
  • Simple and elegant, without any complexity.
  • Anytime, anywhere – as long as you have data on your smartphone you can do all your banking.
  • Built from the ground up, without buying any packaged “enterprise” solutions which are expensive and difficult to customise or innovate from. This means that Bank Zero’s costs are low, plus it can drive innovation all the way from core basic banking principles through to funky features.

Now read: Bank Zero will be cheaper and more powerful than your current bank

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Bank Zero ready to take on Discovery Bank and TymeBank