Stanchart launches infinite credit card

By BUUMBA CHIMBULU

STANDARD Chartered Bank has launched the first ever infinite credit card which allows holders to enjoy complimentary access to airport lounges while allowing them book flights and hotels, shop for electronic gadgets and redeem vouchers.

The Visa Infinite Credit Card offers personalised services and unique privileges in a single card which means it can be tagged to up to 5 supplementary cards.

This means that the Infinite card can be tagged to the primary or main card. For example, the card holder can assign separate spend limits and cards to 5 other individuals.

Speaking at the official launch of the infinite credit card in Lusaka recently, Standard Chartered Bank chief executive officer, Herman Kasekende, said the Infinite card was part of the banks digital banking aspiration.

Mr Kasekende said the aim of the card was to ensure banking was easier and more convenient.

“Key to our ability to remain operational after over a century in Zambia, is our ability to innovate, identify your changing needs and adapt our product and service offering,” he said.

And Commerce, Trade and Industry Permanent Secretary, Kayula Siame, said the Infinite Credit Card demonstrated how Zambia was keeping abreast with a new era of transacting, where Information and Communication Technologies kept improving.

Ms Kayula said the global shift to the use of mobile phones to transact presented a turning point for businesses in emerging markets such as Zambia.

“Using digital payment platforms is not only safer, but it is also convenient and saves you time and money. It can also come with rewards, as the Standard Chartered Credit Card has shown us,” she said.

Ms Siame said Government was determined to support efforts which added to the country’s competitiveness in the global economy.

She said Government was also committed to enhance the ease of doing business in Zambia through the implementation of various measures across several sectors of the economy such as on-line Business Registration System and the Tax online System.

“As Government, we are determined to support efforts which add to Zambia’s competitiveness in the global economy, such as the one we are launching today,” she said.

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Larfarge Zambia records low sales

By MAILESI BANDA

LARFARGE Zambia has recorded low sales in the last six months due to the high rainfall that led to people halting construction activities, chief executive officer Vincent Bouckaert has disclosed.

Mr. Bouckaert said the performance of the first semester of 2017 was not good, adding that that was the common challenge among the local cement manufacturing companies.

Speaking in an interview with the Daily Nation, Mr Bouckaert said they expected a better performance during the second semester owing to the way the sales increased in June.

He explained that they had been exploring new markets in order to increase their exports this year.

“We are expecting to have increased volumes on the export market during the year 2017 because we are exploring new markets for exports which include Zimbabwe and Burundi. There will be an increase from the previous 300,000 tonnes we exported to the Democratic Republic of Congo, Malawi and Burundi last year,” he said.

Meanwhile, Lafarge Zambia presented awards to the winners of the Timange Ma Bondi promotion which ran for three months from February to May and saw four winners walk away with 9,000 bags of cement and four plots.

Congratulating the winner, Mr Bouckaert said the company was committed to ensuring that they promoted the construction of quality infrastructure for the development of the infrastructure sector.

Mr. Bouckaert said the success of the campaign was owed to the participants, the end users, for making sure the campaign was successful.

“From the time the promotion started, we have given out 9,000 bags of cement and four plots to the lucky winners, the objective is not only to sell cement but also promote good infrastructure for people and improve the way we are building,” he said.

The grand prize winners of the plots and 400 bags of cement each, were presented  to Hildah Kazela and Andrew Milambo of Lusaka. Others are Willard Bulaya of Solwezi and Olande Phiri from Ndola.

Two of the plots are in Lusaka’s Musamba area while the remaining two are on the Copperbelt in Ndola’s Itawa area.

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Investors implored to invest at the great Chishimba falls

By MUKOSELA KASALWE

INVESTORS should seize the opportunity to put up infrastructure such as camping sites and play parks at the Great Chishimba Falls of Northern Province, says Chishimba Falls site manager, Joseph Museba.

Mr. Museba said the Chishimba Falls site had basic infrastructure like the information centre, ablution block and a viewing centre but that management was looking at ways of increasing revenue collection apart from entry fees.

In an interview with the Daily Nation, Mr Chishimba called on interested investors to construct accommodation, conference centres, camping sites and play parks as it would enable tourists to stay at the site longer and spend money on other tourist activities.

Mr. Museba expressed happiness that Government had seen immense potential with the prolific waterfall and that the provincial office in Kasama had informed them of having intentions to erect a theatre centre soon where a lot of cultural performances and exhibitions would be taking place.

He said land for the theatre centre would be identified at the site and a design undertaken by architects.

“I would like to urge investors in the tourism sector to take advantage of many investment opportunities available in the construction of infrastructure like camping sites, play parks and accommodation,” he said.

 Mr. Museba said although the Chishimba Falls was open for camping, there was need to put up a full-fledged camping site with appropriate features such as a kitchen and other necessities.

He thanked the Government for having identified a contractor to work on the access roads of about 2. 1 kilometres from the Kasama –Mporokoso Road which was likely to attract tourist inflow in the area.

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Councils key to help marketeers insure

By MAILESI BANDA

LOCAL authorities are well placed to encourage traders take up insurance cover and protect their investments, Insurance Association of Zambia (IAZ) consumer education officer Kambole Chituwo has said.

In an interview with the Daily Nation, Mr Chituwo said the recent fires in the country should be regarded as a wakeup call for small businesses that were likely to fall into bankruptcy once their investments were gutted.

“With the recent fires that have affected the country, we have seen that the general public is looking at the importance of financial protection and this is the right time for people to think of the future, “he said.

Mr Chituwo explained that the local authorities had a direct contact with the traders in the markets as they collected the levy from them, adding that there was need for the councils to educate the traders on the importance of insurance while finding ways in which they could make the product accessible to them.

He noted that since the association launched the insurance products for cooperatives and associations, the response had not been positive because most of the insurance companies had challenges accessing this market.

But Mr Abraham Sakala, an affected trader in the Lusaka City Market inferno has charged that insurance companies delayed in paying affected victims, adding that that was also a negative impact on the growth of the business.

Mr. Sakala said the time the companies took in investigating the cause of the accident was not helping the business as they lost out on money during the time taken by the insurance companies. “While insurance is importan,t the companies should work towards making the money available to the victims within a period of 48 hours or less to help the business flourish as it is a well-known fact that time is important in business,” he said.

He challenged insurance companies to make their products competitive by paying the affected parties on time.

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Zoona injects K5m into expansion

By BUUMBA CHIMBULU

MOBILE money provider, Zoona, has committed K5 million for its expansion in Zambia following a 20 percent year-on-year revenue growth in the country.

The commitment is aimed at driving expansion and job creation in Zambia over the next six months.

The money provider also announced that it recorded a strong performance in the first six months of 2017, during which Zoona processed over K200m in mobile money transactions in the country.

Zoona had also grown its outlet network in Zambia by 30 percent in the first half of this year, bringing the total number of outlets in the country to over 1,700 and resulting in the creation of an additional 350 new jobs.

Commenting on the expansion, Zoona Zambia director, Lelemba Phiri, said the company was looking forward to investing further into developing entrepreneurs through its agent model in Zambia to launch additional products in the next six months.

“We are very pleased to announce such strong results for the first half of 2017, which reflect the hard work of our team, and the impact Zoona is achieving in making financial services accessible for all. To have the trust and confidence of close to 2 million customers in Zambia is humbling and motivating,” she said.

Ms Phiri said Zoona would be expanding into new markets in the second half of the year.

Zoona chief executive officer, Mike Quinn, said their products were co-created with their customers in Zambia, Mozambique and Malawi.

 “We pride ourselves on developing solutions that people want and need – and to do that we stay in close contact with our customers, agents and tellers and importantly, we listen to them,

“We want to make sure we continue to help enable entrepreneurship, create employment and help communities thrive,” he said.

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