On the Money - In Brief

Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

- In South Africa, a service launched by FNB in November enabling its customers to send money or make payments to anyone with a local cellphone number, has so far achieved transactions worth R1m a day, surpassing expectations as ever more people become comfortable conducting banking via cellphones. FNB said its eWallet solution had achieved growth of 239% since its launch, and had attracted mostly urban- based customers who were taking advantage of its convenience to send money to relatives and family, particularly those in the rural areas, where people do not have easy access to banking services.

- Struggling South African technology firm Faritec has suspended trading in its shares as it fears that sensitive information related to its financial woes is leaking. Faritec is fighting for survival as it runs against time to raise R60m to invest in its operations. The company said on Friday that it had asked the JSE to suspend trading because it was in discussions to raise money and that the board was concerned that it may not be able to ensure the confidentiality of unpublished price sensitive information.

- Econet Wireless Zimbabwe fresh from a record US$113 million after-tax profit for the full year to February 2010 will pay out a whopping US$23 million in dividends to its shareholders this year. The mobile phone operator, with over four million subscribers, declared a US$0,06 dividend to take the full year cumulative dividend to US$0,14 after the company declared US$0,08 in the interim.