One Horizon Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: OHGI), a leading carrier-grade VoIP solution for mobile providers and smartphones, today announced launching its proprietary VoIP technology in Africa through a license agreement with Zimbabwe’s leading mobile network operator Econet Wireless. The application allows roamers to make high-quality phone calls home for approximately the same amount as a local call and is fully integrated with Zimbabwe’s leading secure mobile payment wallet, EcoCash. This is the first deployment in One Horizon’s initiative to deploy their technology throughout Africa with multiple carriers.
Econet Wireless is part of a diversified telecommunications group headquartered in South Africa and servicing Africa, Europe, South America, East Asia and Australia. Econet Wireless Zimbabwe is Zimbabwe’s largest mobile network operator with 9.2 million subscribers representing approximately 65% of the market.
One Horizon’s application with Econet Wireless is fully integrated with EcoCash, a secure mobile payment and transfer solution. Focused on person-to-person money transfers, the technology went live in 2011. Within 18 months of its launch, 31% of Zimbabwe’s adult population registered for the service. Today, EcoCash provides a savings account, international transfers, banking services, payroll services, and solutions for public transportation and retail. There are approximately 6 million EcoCash subscribers.
Brian Collins, CEO of One Horizon Group, stated, “After successfully launching our proprietary, low bandwidth, VoIP technology in the Philippines with Smart Communications, we are pleased to have established our presence in a new emerging market in Zimbabwe with its leading mobile network operator. Our white label application has been customized for the demand of Econet’s subscribers and fully integrated with EcoCash. It was very important to Econet that their subscribers who are traveling abroad could transfer money back home to their family seamlessly and without risk of transferring physical cash to top-up their mobile devices. Money is now transferred safely and securely, ensuring families can stay in contact for approximately the same rate as a local call. This feature gets the heart of how intimately involved we get with each carrier in each new market to ensure that their subscribers have all the features, benefits and flexibility they need.”