OPINION: Safaricom plays hardball in Equitel-M-Pesa Battle
Wednesday, August 26, 2015
A year ago, Equity Bank introduced a new technology -the thin SIM card- to the Kenyan market. A thin SIM card allows users to have two SIM card on one phone, saving you the hassle of buying and carrying about two phones.
However, and more importantly, Equity Bank's intention then, as it is now, was to use the thin SIM technology to enter the mobile money market.
The ultimate intention is to challenge Safaricom's grip on the mobile money market, or as one would put it the Kenyan way, their MPesa stronghold.
Equity Bank basically wants to eat Safaricom's lunch, dinner and breakfast, a feat other competitors have tried and failed miserably at, and as if to rub it in, Equity is not hiding its intentions, perhaps motivated by a previous M-Kesho collaboration that went sour.
Safaricom of course, did not like the thin SIM card technology, nor Equity Bank's poorly hidden intentions to dislodge the MPESA jewel from its privileged position in the crown of Safaricom services, and so it waged and lost the battle to stop the introduction of thin-SIM technology into the country.