23 September 2008
South African consumer affairs and complaints website getclosure! has announced that local black-owned investment company Altius Investment Holdings has acquired a stake in the business.
The getclosure! complaint management portal allows consumers to submit their complaints online, delivering the complaint to the appropriate person in the supplier organisation and managing the complaint process until it is resolved.
Funds from the investment will be used to promote the service and to fund enhancements to the getclosure! portal, including mobile access to the service.
“Our experience is that most suppliers want to be told if their service has been sub-standard and welcome the opportunity to put it right,” getclosure! founder and director Ian Donovan said in a statement this week.
“And we like the fact that a growing number of consumers are using our portal to compliment suppliers when they experience exceptional service.”
Increased service performance
The Ask Afrika Orange Index 2008, due for release in November, shows that service performance levels in South Africa have increased since last year from 58.2% to 61.6%.
There is room for improvement however, with 65% a reasonable goal to aim for, according to Ask Afrika, adding that harnessing the reach of the internet to manage the complaints service process was one way to ensure effective outcomes and raise service levels in the country.
“Many South Africans tolerate poor service without speaking up. By cleverly using the internet, getclosure! has made it quick, easy and cost effective to lodge a complaint,” said Society of Consumer Affairs Professionals South Africa chairperson Anne Sayers.
“It then backs this up with an effective complaints resolution process that is not about naming and shaming the company involved.”
Six months after the launch of the service, more than 500 suppliers actively use getclosure! to respond to customer complaints and compliments. Companies have the option to subscribe to the service to receive detailed reporting on complaints handled, customer feedback and the option to customise the landing pages.
Subscribers to the service currently include FNB, Pick n Pay, Spar, Toyota, KFC and Cell C.
“getclosure! is ideally placed to assist the business community and public sector to raise their service levels,” said Altius executive chairman Anwah Nagia. “The team is passionate about improving customer service and has built an exciting venture with a loyal community in a short space of time.”
Altius is a South African-based investment company that facilitates community upliftment, development and empowerment through its investments, with a portfolio that spans agriculture, minerals and industrial waste management.
The investment in getclosure! is Altius’ first foray into the digital world.
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