Unlocking the billions in irredeemable gift vouchers

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Apptivate Africa team with their award for Best Emerging eCommerce during the Digital Inclusion Awards 2018

Apptivate Africa is looking to unlock billions of shillings in irredeemable gift vouchers that companies set aside to reward and keep employees every year.

The firm introduced its multi-store digital voucher to help companies offer a variety of incentives over the Christmas and New Year festivities.

“As the festive season beckons, most companies are unaware that there are options that will be more appreciated than the traditional supermarket vouchers that offer employees limited freedom for merry making,” said Apptivate Africa Chief Executive Officer, Neil Ribeiro.

A survey last year revealed that 88% of companies who gave their employees a gift, gave a supermarket voucher as year-end rewards.

However, research indicates that 16% of these vouchers are never redeemed at all.  This means that one in six vouchers given is never used.  That’s like throwing away one sixth of the vouchers that are bought.

Up to 64% of these vouchers are never redeemed completely because of the difference in cost of gift and voucher value.

“Employees prefer gifts that they will use and value when they need them. Giving them access to such freedom will go a long way in motivating them to stay in the coming year,” said Ribeiro.

Through the M-Tuza scheme, companies give employees and clients unlimited choice on what to redeem and places to buy the gifts from more than 300 locations, which include restaurants, clothes and shoe shops, gyms and spas, hair salons and barbers and wine shops.

“You can also use your M-Tuza digital gift Voucher to buy home decor, kitchenware, holidays and pay for spa, salon visits and many more,” said Ribeiro.

Currently, our e-voucher can be redeemed in Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Nakuru, Eldoret and Naivasha.

M-Tuza allows one to spend from as little as Sh100 to Sh100, 000 over a flexible period of time giving users ability to move across multiple gift shops.

A 2015, End of year Employee Rewards Survey by Corporate Staffing indicates that although different employers have varying budgetary allocations for end of year reward and recognition programs, it is essential that employers exercise some holiday cheer around their workplace through creative and thoughtful end of year benefits and rewards to celebrate a hardworking workforce.

“Employers should give employees a chance to select the gift of their choice as they all have different and vary in taste and preferences. A “one-size fits all” kind of reward and recognition program will not work,” the report recommended.

As opposed to paper vouchers, M-Tuza e-vouchers cannot get lost, stolen, washed, mutilated or become void.