Zimbabwe launches revolutionary share-trading platform

Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa was on hand as C-Trade, the country's online and mobile shares trading platform, went live.

Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa was on hand as C-Trade, the country’s online and mobile shares trading platform went live, opening up its capital markets to investors. The platform is the first of its kind in sub-Saharan Africa and will enable local and foreign investors to purchase securities from anywhere in the world using mobile devices.

Escrow Systems, the firm behind the mobile traded retail bond in Kenya last year, is the technical mastermind of the operation. The group has interests in technology, share registry and consultancy business across East and Southern Africa.

Capital markets regulator Securities Exchange Commission of Zimbabwe (SECZ) is seeking to increase participation of retail investors in the country’s stock exchange. SECZ CEO Tafadzwa Chinamo said C-Trade will open the markets to "virtually everyone". Chinamo said:

"C-Trade is significant; it's a game-changer set to alter how we perceive and interact with stock markets. For today it becomes a reality for millions of Zimbabweans who for so long thought it unimaginable to the stock market literary at their fingertips with the option to partake in and enjoy the benefits of deploying their money with unprecedented simplicity as investors."

"All one needs to access this hitherto select market is an ID number, bank account or cell phone number for those who opt not to use their bank accounts. This makes our market reachable by virtually every adult on the planet. How many more potential investors can one wish for?"

Mnangagwa said C-Trade would both widen and deepen the country's capital markets. "This is indeed another milestone achievement in the financial services sector as this platform will allow a broader spectrum of our society to directly trade and invest on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange. "The adoption of mobile and online trading will result in a larger volume of traffic to the stock market due to the added convenience in transacting. The mobile trading, because of its wide reach will encourage participation at grassroots level as well as among the small retail investor, thus widening and deepening the scope of capital markets," said Mnangagwa.