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Covid-19 lockdown sees consumers turning to voice calls to ‘stay in touch’

01 September 2021 FNB Connect

Consumer-spend on voice calls increased by a whopping 80%

Covid-19 lockdown has resulted in a massive increase in voice calls by users of telecommunications services in South Africa. This is according to FNB Connect, which revealed that in the last 12 months, consumer spend on voice calls increased by a whopping 80% whilst spend on data was up 55%.

Raj Makanjee, CEO of FNB Retail says they are not surprised by this trend as telecommunications has always been one of highest household spend categories for the Bank’s individual customers. As a result, we are consistently looking for ways to ‘democratise’ access to these services by leveraging our ecosystem and digital platform. Every month, customers who use our qualifying bank accounts are rewarded with free voice minutes and data. And our telco services are integrated into our eBucks Rewards to give customers even more value in rewards, he says.

Brad Roper, CEO of FNB Connect says, “As FNB Connect, we understand the pressures customers are facing financially and are committed to providing better value at every opportunity. In addition to reducing our data prices by up to 55% at the beginning of last year to R59 for 1GB (valid of 30 days), our Talk Max Pro offering at R399 per month gives our customers unlimited voice calls to any local network, 24 hours a day as we understand that voice calls remain a huge part of the South African consumer. While we are proud of our value propositions on voice and data, we believe that access to affordable pricing plans for devices is one of the largest impediments to South Africans getting connected for social, employment, health, and educational needs. Hence, we recently launched our popular smart devices offering on the FNB App with contracts of up to 24 months.”

Roper says they are very excited to see growing appetite among the Bank’s customers who prefer FNB Connect as their telecommunications provider of choice. He adds that, in the months ahead, FNB Connect will roll-out industry leading services for SMEs to alleviate the cost of connectivity and help boost this vital part of our economy. This is part of our commitment to offer more value to both the Bank’s Retail and Commercial customers, he says.

“We pride ourselves on putting customers at the centre of our integrated financial solutions, and the innovations we are implementing demonstrate our commitment to value-based solutions, especially during these tough economic times. Overall, our efforts will go a long way to building main-bank relationships with customers in our Retail and Commercial ecosystem,” concludes Roper.

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