* Two other accolades were Commercial of Year (radio) and Local Marketing Campaign of the Year
* The awards confirm that TNM Plc is a strong Malawian brand
* That is continually responding to the service needs of the society and the wider customer base
By Duncan Mlanjira
One of the country’s top mobile phone service providers, TNM Plc, scooped three awards during the 2022 Institute of Marketers Malawi (IMM) awards that earned it the grand award of People’s Brand of the Year.
The two other accolades were Commercial of Year (radio) and Local Marketing Campaign of the Year for the Malawi Stock Exchange-listed company.
Reacting to the recognition, TNM’s Head of Brand and Marketing, Madalitso Jonazi said the awards confirm that TNM Plc is a strong Malawian brand that is continually responding to the service needs of the society and the wider customer base.
“The award for People’s Brand of Year, for example, is a clear testimony that Malawians feel and embrace the TNM brand warmly and wholeheartedly,” he said.
“Intrinsically, that speaks great volumes about the wide range of TNM’s product and service offerings being introduced to meet the aspirations of the market.”
Jonazi added that in 2022 alone, TNM Plc demonstrated through the Mudziwathu initiative and the Pamtsetse Unlimited Data offering that it paid special attention to respond to the need for affordable products and in a tough economic year and while championing financial inclusion in rural areas.
“Through Pamtsetse Unlimited Data, which won the radio commercial of year, we made data affordable and widely accessible to everyone.
“And through the Mudziwathu, which was chosen as Local Marketing Campaign of Year, we continued to make financial inclusion and network service access and penetration tangible at the grassroots.”
He further said ahead of 2023, Malawians should look forward to more world class and reliable products and services on the network.
In April this year, TNM Mpamba Limited, wholly owned subsidiary by TNM Plc, unveiled a special Mudzi Wathu Village Bank wallet to provide convenience and security to savings or lending groups in the country.
The group wallet allows members of registered and formal savings/lending groups to migrate from their traditional way of processing their loan transactions into digital using Mpamba platform — which was designed to respond to the needs of savings groups such as village banks in the provision of safety for their money.
Many village banks and savings groups have been defrauded by people entrusted to manage their financial affairs by robbing all the money saved and bolting to other countries especially South Africa.
Thus the group wallet innovation was set to enable savings groups to create digital identity and enhance formal financial inclusion while improving transparency.
The launch was attended by former President, Joyce Banda, who acknowledging TNM’s role in supporting government’s efforts in women empowerment and called for haste initiatives to redeem rural women from abject poverty.
“Here in Malawi 85% of women are living in abject poverty,” she had said. “While the government is doing its part, some of us must go around and make sure that we empower rural communities.
“The good news is that we have organizations like TNM who are partnering with us to uplift women,” said JB, while applauding TNM for coming up with products and services that aim at enhancing financial inclusion among women.
“TNM is doing a recommendable job in coming up with services on the grassroots that are assisting women to access services like e-banking and credit,” she said.
Mudzi Wathu as a whole, is TNM’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) aimed at helping the masses to grow economic stability in the country, which was launched last year and was graced by Vice-President Saulos Chilima.
Chilima, himself a former corporate world connoisseur, took cognizance that TNM was pioneering efforts to contribute to the country’s economic growth and financial inclusion using mobile technology, and for introducing the Mudzi Wathu concept — which is a participatory rural development model.
The Vice-President, who before joining frontline politics was Airtel Malawi managing director, gave an example of a study done by the GSMA, which showed that an increase in mobile network penetration of every 10% has a resultant GDP growth of about 4% — a target he challenged TNM plc to achieve as Malawi remained a virgin territory for telecommunications coverage.
“Malawi still lags behind at 48% in terms of mobile phone penetration, compared to most countries which are at 90%,” he had said. “This leaves room for growth and an opportunity for TNM Plc to challenge the market.
“In as far as increasing penetration is concerned, Mudzi Wathu presents that opportunity for TNM Plc to grow as a business and in return to help increase government’s tax revenue,” he had said.
Under Mudzi Wathu, TNM uses its own customer databases to monitor usage and aggregate revenue to be shared for community development and increase availability of mobile telecommunication network services nationally, with a deliberate focus on rural areas.