FNB launches own mobile network

One of biggest banks in South Africa First National Bank, popularly known as FNB, is set to become the first financial institution in the country to launch a mobile network when it starts selling SIM cards on June 15.

On 15 June 2015, FNB Connect is introducing a mobile virtual network operator that will roam on Cell C’s infrastructure.
Chief executive officer of FNB Ravesh Ramlakan said that the launch of the bank’s mobile network has been three years in the making.

The bank plans to sell 24-month voice, data and SMS contract deals as well as a “flexi” option that enables clients to customise their contracts in terms of time periods and offerings.
FNB Connect is also promising up to 40% back in eBucks on total spend. This eBucks offering will be switched on as of July 1.

To date, 4 000 people have been testing the network. Customers of FNB Connect can order SIM cars via the bank’s online banking portal and even via branches and cellphone banking.
For its prepaid offerings, FNB Connect plans to charge R0.95 for voice calls per minute, R2 per megabyte and R0.50 per SMS.

In a related development, the company is also selling 1GB data bundles on all plans for R145 and 2GB data bundles for R245.
Out of bundle costs on its contract offerings are expected to range from R1.50 per voice minute, R1 per megabyte and R0.50 per SMS.

Voice calls from the FNB banking app are set to be free to other users of the banking app. Calls using the banking app to other SA networks are also expected to cost R0.39.
The offering has taken three years to develop as it integrates with FNB’s online banking system, where the bank’s customers are expected to buy SIM cards online and have them delivered to their doors.
Phones will be sold separately to give FNB customers choice in terms of how quickly they pay off their devices said the bank.