Safaricom Plans Mobile-Money Roll-Out After Vodafone Stake Sale

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Safaricom Ltd. may expand its popular mobile-banking service M-Pesa into countries such as Nigeria and Angola, as East Africa’s biggest company grapples with regulatory scrutiny in its home market of Kenya.

The sale of a 35 percent stake in the Nairobi-based company to Vodacom Group Ltd. by parent Vodafone Group Plc has enabled Safaricom to look to new markets, Chief Executive Officer Bob Collymore said in an interview at his office in the Kenyan capital. That’s because Vodafone has an agreement with the South African government to only expand in Africa through Vodacom, its majority-owned Johannesburg-based unit.

“Before the end of the year, I would expect to have something to roll out,” Collymore said June 8. Safaricom may seek to agree to platform-sharing deals with competitors such as MTN Group Ltd. to expand M-Pesa rather than set up in new countries, he said.

Source: Bloomberg Technology (link opens in a new window)