FIRST RAND GROUP’S eBUCK’S CLAIMS STRONG SUCCESS
The FirstRand Group’s e-commerce venture, eBucks.com, last week was claiming success as the Internet banking portal for First National Bank, Origin, WesBank and Ansbacher as well as establishing itself as SA’s leading rewards programme.The group launched eBucks.com in October 2000, shortly after the launch of Old Mutual’s Fundsnet, Icanonline, Standard Bank’s Bluebean and before Saambou’s Internet bank, 20Twenty.
At the time of launch, the group announced it had set aside R300 million for the launch and to support the fledgling business for a period of three years. Paul Harris, CEO of FirstRand Bank Holdings has said: "eBucks in fact used less than R100 million at peak funding. We are very proud to say that eBucks.com is now profitable on a month-to-month basis and is outperforming all initial expectations."
In addition to the growing strength of its bottom line, proof of eBucks.com’s growing success is that there are now over 129 000 active Internet bankers conducting over R4.1 billion worth of transactions via the Web site every month, and over 500 000 rewards programme customers who, in utilising the products of FirstRand and MTN, have built up over R100 million worth of eBucks. The average spend in the eBucks Shop has also increased on a monthly basis, with over R4 million worth of eBucks spent during December and total sales for 2002 being double that of 2001.