A recent study by Brand SA and Brand Finance Africa reveals that telecoms operators are leading the way in South Africa's corporate brand space. It is no wonder then that Hello Group is seeing such tremendous growth not only in this sector, after their introduction to the market with low cost international calling rates, but also through their innovative fintech products and services.
Founded 10 years ago, Hello Group is South Africa’s leading technology player focused at the base of the pyramid offering low cost, easily accessible consumer and business services. These services include international telecoms, international remittance and financial services, nationwide distribution and FMCG activations. In addition, the Group offers entrepreneurial training and start-up kits for agents.
Hello Group is constantly refining their business offerings in these areas which undoubtedly affords them the growing success that they see today. “We owe our advancement to a number of factors. The ones that stand out are our true understanding of consumers’ needs, and offering innovative low cost services which are accessible, and easy to use,” says Nadir Khamissa, Hello Co-Founder and Group CEO.
“The informal sector is becoming more and more tech-savvy, with eight-in-ten adults owning a cellular phone. Around 40% of these are smartphones, and an estimated 30% of users send or receive money transfers through their devices. Technology is truly the communication tool of the future, and South Africa is well established with first-world networks and systems,” adds Khamissa. Through Hello Group’s unique product offerings using the latest cellular and financial technology, simple and easy transactions such as sending money home, or regularly calling family members outside of the country’s borders, becomes an everyday reality, changing the lives of migrant workers both living in South Africa and in their families abroad.
With a pioneering entrepreneurial team behind the growing brand, Hello Group has recently been named ‘game changers’ at the Sanlam Business Partners’ Entrepreneur of the Year Awards, taking both Innovator of the Year and the Medium Business Entrepreneur of the Year awards.
In addition they have been selected as finalists in the Ernest & Young Southern Africa World Entrepreneur Awards 2015, in the Exceptional Category which gives recognition to individuals and organisations who have shown exceptional tenacity and determination in building a successful and established enterprise. The finals will be held on 3 November 2015.
“The business has not come without its challenges. With a huge reliance on a number of different elements in ensuring that our product offerings and distribution network grows, we constantly review our business strategy in order to enable us to leverage off, and are up to-date with, our core strength of technology,” comments Khamissa.
Reaching their consumer base has been has been a process that has won them the success they are reaping today. Through the approach of marketing services at the base of the pyramid, Hello Group has crafted a strategy which is centred on technology-based solutions with measurable real time outcomes. Whilst maintaining their competitive advantage, Hello Group strongly believes in social entrepreneurship as a key driver delivering value to the consumers they serve and provide an extra revenue stream to the distribution base they empower.
“To-date we are proud to say that we offer tailor-made products and services through 13 000 outlets nationally, and 45 000 independent agents. This clearly distinguishes us from the rest of the market,” he adds.