The public launch of Bank Zero has been delayed until next year, according to CEO Yatin Narsai.
Bank Zero has been in beta testing since March, and its initial launch date was set for the second half of 2019.
During the beta period, the Bank Zero team rigorously tests systems to ensure that the full product offering is available for customers at launch.
“We have walked away from doing a soft public launch this year, however, we are still on track for starting widely spread public operations next year,” Narsai told MyBroadband.
“Our progress is solid but we don’t want the additional complexity of a soft launch to interfere with our focus on the wider launch of our bank – we have multiple projects running in parallel at full speed.”
Narsai added that Bank Zero is continuing to learn from its ongoing beta testing.
“Despite the current economic environment, we remain very excited about the viability of our Bank Zero value proposition and our overall offering, and can’t wait for the market to experience it,” he said.
Bank Zero is approaching a milestone in a number of weeks, after which the company will provide more information on its projected launch dates, Narsai said.
“We don’t have a fixed-in-stone new time frame yet, but we will communicate the latest info on this in a few weeks.”
“There is a big milestone coming up for us and we want to wait until that has been achieved,” he said.
Bank Zero cofounder Michael Jordaan has previously stated that Bank Zero will offer new, innovative banking at low costs and provide a high interest rate for savings.
Jordaan said the bank would offer the following features, among others:
- A Bank Zero card’s 16-digit card number does not change when the card is replaced. This removes the need to update online payment details for subscription services.
- Detection of rogue debit orders will be free for individual and business customers.
- Business customers will enjoy seamless integration with Xero accounting software.
The company will face stiff competition from other digital-only banks such as Discovery Bank and TymeBank when it launches, as well as traditional players like Standard Bank and FNB.