It's not only banks that are trying to cash in on the emerging financial power of women. The telecoms industry has also taken note. In March, du launched Her Business Super Plan - a package designed to meet the needs of businesswomen that offers exclusive benefits and rewards. Hala Badri, du's executive vice president of brand and communications, tells us more.
Why did you decide to launch a plan purely for businesswomen?
There are over 14,000 registered businesswomen in the UAE managing nearly US$6.6 billion (Dh2.4 trillion) worth of industry. Moreover, Emirati women are represented in 27.95 per cent of the national labour force, with the UAE being ranked first regionally and 45th globally out of 138 countries in terms of reducing the gender gap in empowerment and employment by the UN Human Development Report in 2010. With women playing such a vital role in our nation's development, it made sense to create a package that is tailor made to their requirements. We recognise the importance of investing in women in business and through Her Business Super Plan, we hope to inspire confidence, offer support and resources towards the development of women.
How does it differ to a conventional plan that is open to all?
One of the most prominent differences is a feature called Her Business Calling Circle, a first of its kind attribute. All Her Business Super Plan mobile subscribers are included in the Business Calling Circle, and calls made between them within the UAE at any time, any day, will enjoy 100 per cent discounted call rates. Other benefits include 400 national and 200 international minutes, the choice of either 2GB of free national data per month or unlimited BlackBerry within the UAE, roaming benefits and a smartphone bundle - all for just Dh200 per month. In addition, subscribers are able to earn Club Apparel shopping rewards, earning back 5 per cent of the total bill in shopping reward points.
What has been the response from the market to this plan?
While we're unable to divulge specific numbers, we would like to share that there are more women entrepreneurs signing up to this plan on a daily basis than we had expected. It's doing incredibly well in the market.
Are you planning to launch any other products for women?
We want to understand our Her Business Super Plan customers further, in terms of being able to comprehend their spend, usage behaviour and needs, which will lead us to be able to come up with more segmented offers and value-added services that will cater to this very specific market.