Standard Bank announced its foray into the lucrative airtime and data market with the launch of its mobile virtual network operator. Photo: Supplied
JOHANNESBURG - Standard Bank yesterday announced its foray into the lucrative airtime and data market with the launch of its mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) service, Standard Bank Mobile (SB Mobile).

The bank said it would be using wireless capacity from mobile operators Cell C and MTN and would allow its customers to convert bank charges into airtime or data.

Africa’s biggest bank by assets also said it would provide handsets in the first quarter of next year and to add broadband services – like fixed LTE and fibre – shortly afterwards.

The MVNO service will provide a branded sim card with a new number while existing cell numbers can also be retained.

Stephen Bailey SB Mobile chief executive said communication costs are reduced as an SB Mobile client receives free airtime and data based on their specific account tier and the number of times they transact.

“Rewards are tiered so that every time they transact they get something back – 1MB of data is given back for every R10 spent on all transactional cards, for instance, at a monthly fee of R39. Youth and inclusive banking clients will pay no fee, however,” Bailey said.

“All credit card transactions for signed up SB Mobile clients qualify for 1MB for every R10 and R100 free airtime for the R39 monthly fee. UCount customers, meanwhile, get 50 points automatically and free automatic rewards depending on the tier.”

The service will only be available to Standard Bank's customers.

BUSINESS REPORT