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TymeBank May Have Just Hit 2 Million Clients

TymeBank reported that they hit 1.9 million clients with over 150 000 new clients during May 2020. Since they take on over 100 000 clients a month normally, they may have just hit 2 million clients during the lockdown.

Do you remember the ‘old days’ of waiting in long lines to wait to speak to a bank manager to open a new account? Maybe your dad took you to open your first savings account so that you could be a responsible adult one day who knew how to save. The process may have involved a ton of paperwork and lots of waiting around. Now, with the use of technology and digital banking, it is possible to open a new account with banks like TymeBank within just a few minutes.

Market disruptors like Bank Zero (who they say will finally launch later this year) and TymeBank as well as Discovery Bank, with its 200 000 clients, are looking to follow in the wake of Capitec Bank and take on the “big boys” in the South African Market but offering cheaper products and services.

What Cash Strapped Clients Really Want

TymeBank have no account fees and offer low transaction fees which can be very attractive to consumers who are counting pennies during the pandemic and brewing global economic recession.

TymeBank have a partnership with Pick n Pay (and Boxer) stores and says that clients can currently deposit or withdraw at over 1500 retailers nationally.

‘TymeBank usually takes on around 100 000 clients a month’

2 Million Clients?

TymeBank report that they had over 1.9 million clients by May 2020. The bank usually takes on around 100 000 clients a month and initially saw the lockdown (particularly level 5) hit their new client onboarding numbers. People were simply not going out and thus were unable to open accounts. But when lockdown levels dropped and as shoppers headed back to their local grocery stores, like Pick n Pay, things began to take an upswing.

TymeBank (owned by African Rainbow Capital) only launched in Feb 2019 and has by now probably hit the 2 million client mark during the national lockdown. They will no doubt make a big official splash about reaching those numbers in the next few weeks as it has been a long term goal of theirs.

Forbes recently rated TymeBank as the second best bank in South Africa behind Capitec Bank and just ahead of FNB and Nedbank.

‘Forbes recently rated TymeBank as the second best bank in South Africa’

Bank Zero

You may be wondering what has happened with the other promised digital bank: Bank Zero? Well, after several delays Bank Zero have finally started issuing cards to a small group of clients including many of their own staff. This Beta group of users is now fully on the bank’s system and able to go around shopping etc with their debit cards.

‘Bank Zero have finally started issuing cards to a small group of clients’

The bank is using this time to test their systems and see that they are really ready to launch. They want to avoid the situation where they launch prematurely and then have various system issues (like when Discovery Bank users checked their balances only to find they all said they had no money for one afternoon).

With the pandemic forcing more people online than ever before, digital focused banks may find they are able to reach even more clients than first anticipated, especially since these banks are trying to target consumers who have as yet not really entered the traditional banking market in the past.


Can your business adapt and embrace more online offerings and services? Can you start to have a greater online presence and the ability to service your clients around the clock (like after traditional business hours)? If you do already have an online presence can you streamline it for your users?

Finding new ways to help your clients use your services in an easier way will help in the future as competition grows more intense. Be sure to not rely on the old way of doing things or you may just get left in the dust as your competition comes up with better ways and better fees and takes your clients away from you.