Items filtered by date: Sunday, 18 March 2018

Barclays Kenya launched an app on Friday to allow customers to borrow up to 150,000 shillings ($1,484) for 30 days using their phones.Barclays, a unit of South Africa’s Barclays Africa Group, wants to attract at least five

million new customers in the next five years, up from around half a million, through mobile phone-based lending, Chief Executive Jeremy Awori said.

Kenyan lenders have been turning to technology in response to competition from mobile phone-based financial services such as Safaricom’s M-Pesa platform.

Pressure to use mobile channels to cut costs increased when the government capped lending rates in September 2016, crimping profit margins.

“Our focus is to use innovation and technology to develop products that are more relevant to the emerging needs of our customers,” Awori said.

Known as Timiza, Swahili for “Achieve”, the new app’s competitors include KCB Group’s KCB M-Pesa and CBA Group’s M-Shwari, both operated in partnership with Safaricom.

Equity Group, another top-five lender, offers mobile financial services through its telecoms subsidiary, Equitel.

Awori said the app will allow users, who will access it by dialling a short code and do not have to be Barclays clients, to buy insurance and to hail rides through a partnership with local ride-hailing company Little.

($1 = 101.1000 Kenyan shillings)

Reporting by Duncan Miriri; editing by Dasha Afanasieva (Reuters)

Published in Bank & Finance

A flight attendant who fell from the emergency door of a parked aeroplane in Uganda's Entebbe airport has died, the BBC has learned.

The woman, whose nationality has not been revealed, was rushed to Kisubi hospital 16km (10 miles) away but died soon after, a spokesperson said.

Reports say the Emirates Airline employee was preparing the flight for boarding when the incident happened.

Uganda's aviation authorities say they have launched an investigation.

It said in a statement that the flight attendant "appeared to have opened the emergency door" and unfortunately "fell off an aircraft that had safely landed and parked".

Kisubi hospital's spokesperson Edward Zabonna told the BBC that the crew member had injuries "all over her face and knees".

He said that she had been "unconscious but alive" when she arrived at the hospital on Wednesday evening but died soon after.

News agency AFP quotes a statement from Emirates Airline as saying: "A member of our cabin crew, unfortunately, fell from an open door while preparing the aircraft for boarding".

The Dubai-based airline promised its "full cooperation" with the investigation. Source: BBC

Published in World

Seven firms have submitted bids to buy a majority stake in Zambia’s sole 24,000 barrel per day Indeni Petroleum Refinery, an executive at the agency handling the bidding said on Saturday.

Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) procurement specialist Mwila Kapita said Glencore Energy UK Ltd, Vitol SA, China Petroleum Technology and Development Corporation and Philia Trading were among the firms that had submitted bids.

The others are Joint Stock Company Global Security of Russia, Sahara Energy Resources Limited and a consortium of Beijing Huiersanji Green Chem Company Limited and AVIC International Holding.

Zambia is looking for a strategic partner to work with Indeni Petroleum Refinery, built in 1973. The oil company is currently 100 percent owned by the state-controlled Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) Limited.

Reporting by Chris Mfula; Editing by Mark Potter (Reuters) 

Published in Business

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