CapeTalk

Web: http://www.powertime.co.za

Email: sebastien.lacour@powertime.co.za

Tel: +27 (0) 72 738 1399 / 072 738 21399

Powertime

Biography

‘Power to the people’ is an age old African refrain, one that can easily be heightened and extended by the use of mobile media. However, in this instance we are not talking about a new Arab Spring, but rather an electricity vending service with mobile applications. Sébastien Lacour says that his company, Powertime, has as its mission the goal of developing, delivering and operating innovative Internet and mobile solutions that provide critical knowledge and convenience to assist customers to make informed decisions about the use of energy. The company’s services currently allow customers to buy prepaid electricity, airtime and pay their municipal account conveniently and safely. He points out that his aim is to change the rules of the game in what is a small margin industry, by offering multi-platform, multi-payment methods, along with add-on services like consumption statistics and low electricity alerts. He adds that Powertime is one of very few players that is working with all municipalities, and this is due to the company’s reliability. Sébastien says that by focusing on customer service and innovation in a sector that is extremely regulated and conservative, the business has been able to differentiate itself. It remains a challenge to find the right balance between delivering innovative solutions and ensuring compliance with the sometimes restrictive regulations of municipalities. Nonetheless, the business remains strong, driven by the increasing price of electricity and the desire of customers to more precisely track their electricity consumption. By diversifying into new areas, he hopes to soon have as many as one million customers paying bills, fines and purchasing tickets from the platform. He also plans to be present in other prepayment countries and wants to further develop Powertime’s PayGenius payment gateway, while also bringing more merchant and customers on board.