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Dashen Bank and EagleLion System Technology have teamed up to launch “Dube Ale,” a new Buy-Now Pay Later scheme that allows users to purchase goods and services on credit.

Dube Ale which is a digital twist to Ethiopia’s traditional deferred payment scheme, known as “dube, was inaugurated at the Sheraton Addis Hotel in the capital.

With the option to pay back in increments of three months, six months, or a year, Dashen Bank believes that the scheme will boost economic activity by giving consumers the ability to buy products and services they need without having to pay upfront.

To use the service, customers can download the Dube Ale application from the Play Store or App Store, register for the service, and then visit a nearby branch of Dashen Bank to set a spending limit.

Eligibility for the service requires that customers be above 18 years of age and have a monthly income, which they can prove by providing documents such as a letter from their employer or a business license in the case of business owners.

The maximum spending limit on Dube Ale is currently set at 700,000 birr and is determined at Dashen Bank branches. Payments can only be made using the app, and withdrawals are not allowed.

Customers are also charged a subscription, guarantee, and convenience fee when they sign up for Dube Ale. Credit on Dube Ale may also incur interest, depending on the merchant (cash merchants vs. Dube merchants).

After registering and setting up their Dube Ale account, customers can make purchases on credit from a list of physical and online stores and merchants that Dashen Bank has onboarded to use Dube Ale. Some of the merchants that have already signed up include Guzo Go, Shoa Supermarket, Warit, and Queens Supermarket.

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Users will have the option of paying back the money either via Amole, Dashen Bank’s mobile Banking platform or allowing the bank to automatically deduct the money from their bank account when payment is due.

Dube Ale, originally named Dube Pay, is the latest digital lending product to come out of Ethiopia. A month ago, Awash Bank became the first Bank in Ethiopia to issue credit cards.

Two weeks ago, Lion Bank unveiled its microloan app, called Alegnta. Ethiopia’s first uncollateralized digital lending product, Michu, was launched in 2022 and has already disbursed loans totaling more than 500 million Birr. Ethio Telecom’s telebirr, is another giant in the scene, while Safaricom’s Mpesa is expected to enter soon.

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Kaleab Girma, an Addis Ababa-based reporter and researcher, with over six years of experience in the field. He currently serves as Shega's Editor-in-Chief and specializes in reporting on small businesses, innovation, technology, and startups in Ethiopia.

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