South Africans are some of the most over-indebted people in the world, but Bayport’s financial wellness solution – built on a partnership between employers, employees and ourselves – makes a different path possible.
Almost 60% of employed South Africans report to be stressed about their finances. Based on international research, this suggests that employers can expect more than half of their workforce to be less productive and more likely to make mistakes and break safety rules.
Against this backdrop, and armed with more than 15 years of understanding South African consumers’ financial needs, Bayport created its financial wellness solution for corporate employees.
We called it Bayport Money Solutions and since early 2019, it’s been empowering customers to rewrite their financial stories.
Companies often have wellness days and even full programmes that teach employees about keeping their minds and bodies healthy. With Bayport Money Solutions, companies can now help their employees to keep their finances healthy.
The first step is for the employer to sign up with Bayport as their financial wellness partner and agree to Bayport deducting loan instalments from their employees’ payslips. This financial wellness relationship also requires Bayport to provide ongoing access to financial literacy awareness, training and information.
Next is to introduce Bayport to employees by, for instance, having a Bayport stall at a wellness day. Employees who are interested then register for Bayport Money Solutions. People who need intensive help get a money coach who works with them to understand their financial situation and agree on a plan to get out of trouble.
Bayport’s practical help includes negotiating settlement terms and discounts with creditors, stopping legal action where possible, and putting together repayment plans that employees can afford. Employees who qualify can take out a Bayport loan to consolidate their debt at a preferential interest rate.
Depending on a person’s situation, it can take between six and nine months to improve his or her credit score, and a year or longer to become debt free. Throughout this process, Bayport’s Money Solutions team is available to support and encourage employees who have decided to improve their financial situation.
During 2019, 11 companies signed up with Bayport Money Solutions. One of the first – an employer in the motor industry – has seen remarkable results. The percentage of employees with no debt arrears has increased from 19% to 55%, and 55% of employees’ credit scores have improved. The almost R8 million in preferentially rated loans that Bayport has issued, has helped almost 160 employees. Collectively, they saved R2,1 million in repayments due to the reduced rate.
Individual success stories are also testimonies of hope and empowerment, as Sandile Molefi’s experience shows: “I had more than R400 000 debt and was behind on all my loans and accounts. Bayport negotiated 30% settlement discounts on my behalf, gave me a loan to pay off my four largest debts, unlocked R4 000 in monthly cash flow, and taught me how to manage my finances. My life is changed! My credit score is improving, I will retire debt free, and I’m no longer scared to answer my phone.”