A new app has replaced the traditional committee system of money saving.
It is called Oraan.
Three women from Karachi, Halima Iqbal, Farwa and Maya Malik launched the app last year.
The team explained how the app works and its benefits on SAMAA TV’s programme Naya Din on Tuesday.
Farwa, the founder, said that the app secures the process of a committee by providing absolute security and transparency of payments both to the committee manager and the members. “One can easily get updates on the amount being received and paid through the app,” she told the host.
The aim of the app is not just to help you with savings, but also educate you on using the money you have saved.
According to a report by CEIC, a forum providing economic data, the Gross National Savings (a total of personal savings, business savings and government savings) of Pakistan for June was 5.2%. This is the lowest in the last 10 years.
Iqbal, the CEO of the company, said that an estimate of 41% people save money through committees. They use this money to make payments for education, business, marriage and travel. “Committees in economic terms are an informal way of savings,” she said.
Oraan is presently servicing about 2,000 people. Apart from providing security of payments, it also helps with networking. The company also has Facebook groups called the ‘Oraan Committees’ specifically for women. These groups help get contacts for people in search of a committee.
“Members enter these groups through referrals and other security measures like verification of CNICs. We make sure that these Facebook groups are reliable and helpful for the users,” Malik who works as the training lead of the company, said.
Malik said that if a member pulls out of a committee midway, the app has a pool of members who are on a lookout to invest in such a setup. The app then connects these people with committee managers.
The app also encourages and guides people on how to smartly invest their money.
It gives you an option to open an account with MCB – Arif Habib Savings and Investments Limited and invest in their mutual funds and national savings.
“We have been educating people through sessions on financial literacy by visiting salons, corporations and training centres, convincing people to make safe investments,” Iqbal said.