by WELLINGTON TONI
HARARE, (ITNews Zimbabwe) – OLD MUTUAL Group-owned Central Africa Building Society (CABS) bank is shutting down 18 branches across four provinces in Zimbabwe as part of their rationalization process due to a sharp rise in the mobile and internet banking.
In a statement, CABS said: “In line with our branch rationalization strategy, the branches will be closing down on 31 March 2020.”
The branches that will be shut down are at Zimpost, Lloyds Service Station, Mactracy Private Limited, Meikles Financial Services and OK Money Wave in Chegutu, Mashonaland West.
In Mt Darwin, Mashonaland Central, CABS will shut down the agencies at The Shed Hardware, Mega Save Supermarket, Lumac Technologies, Madziva Business Centre and St Albert’s Super Stores.
My Cash Financial Services, Bilcro Investments, Danadenga, Mafukidze General Dealer and Restaurant, Tekeshe Trading and Zimpost in Chivhu, will bring their operations to an end as well as Zimpost and Makechemu Holdings agents in Mupandawana, Masvingo.
The banking sector has been hit by uncertainties, in the wake inconsistent monetary policy changes, lack of cash and mobile banking in the last three years with a number of established banks downsizing, in the process retrenching hundreds of workers.
Even traditional banks like Standard Chartered Bank have maintained just three branches in Harare and two in Bulawayo-the same goes for First Capital Bank (formerly Barclays Bank) and Stanbic.
Due to digitilisation, internet and mobile banking, led by Econet-owned Steward Bank, customers have migrated from the traditional banks.
Shortage of cash in banks, where customers get just about ZWL$100 in coins (equivalent to US$5 or R100), have seen people resort to mobile transactions.
CABS is a subsidiary of Old Mutual Zimbabwe Limited, Zimbabwe’s largest life assurance organization.
Old Mutual Zimbabwe is in turn a subsidiary of Old Mutual PLC – an international financial services conglomerate. The bank has over sixty years of experience and over 50 branches in Zimbabwe.
The Society offers a diverse range of financial products and services that includes transaction and savings accounts, mobile banking, mortgage loans, money market investments, term deposits and pay-roll loans.