Digital bank TymeBank is looking to triple its customer base and break even in the next two years as it gives traditional banks a run for their money with its rapid pace of growth. Photo: Reuters
JOHANNESBURG – Digital bank TymeBank is looking to triple its customer base and break even in the next two years as it gives traditional banks a run for their money with its rapid pace of growth.

TymeBank on Thursday announced that it had reached the 1 million customers milestone, just nine months after it launched with 100 000 customers.

The bank is still a long way from competing with well-established traditional banking groups, but this milestone in such a short period of time could see it punching above its weight.

Cheslyn Jacobs, TymeBank head of sales and service, said that as a start-up bank they had to bring services to people where they don’t have to travel or queue or even pay high fees.

“We have designed a proposition that is beneficial for many people. We expect a similar growth trajectory for the next couple of years,” Jacobs said.

“We are working towards 3 million customers in 2022 when we expect to break even.”

TymeBank comes at a time when traditional banking systems are being shattered by the advent of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, with less customers visiting branches and an increase in online and cellphone banking.

Above its popular goal save account, TymeBank now boasts additional services such as business accounts, 10 percent interest on savings for more than three months, and personal loans.

TymeBank’s millionth customer joined the bank this past Saturday.

Chief executive Tauriq Keraan said that the group wanted to make a difference by bringing people into the economic system by starting TymeBank.

Keeran said TymeBank wanted to make financial services that were client-centric, hence they had partnered with retailers Pick * Pay and Boxer Superstores to make their services easily available.

“Banks have caused barriers to financial access, physical, financial, and emotional. We are overcome by challenges.

"At TymeBank we have worked hard to reduce these barriers,” Keraan said.

“We expected the majority of our customers to be millennials, but nearly half of our customer base is older than 35.

"Its striking for us to discover that this segment of customers tend to be more active than the younger customers.”

Patrice Motsepe, the chairperson of African Rainbow Capital, the majority shareholder in TymeBank, had high praise for Keeran and his executive team for achieving the 1million milestone.

“We assume that the best tech minds come from other places in the world, but we have world class minds right here to be able to reach a million clients,” Motsepe said.

“I have a deep appreciation for chief executive Tauriq Keeran. I’m very proud of you. This country has exceptional talent and you represent one of our brightest chief executives.”

BUSINESS REPORT