M-Pesa leaps above 50 million users

By Ndune Mwaringa

M-Pesa Africa has publicized the attainment of a 50 million customer base, arguably becoming the largest mobile money service on the continent.

Digital money transfer has been a booster in the fintech industry, especially in the efforts of countries recovering from COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are delighted to celebrate this remarkable milestone with our more than 50 million customers across the continent,” noted Sitoyo Lopokoiyit, M-Pesa Africa’s Managing Director.

“As an honour to this achievement, we are reiterating our commitment and deepening our focus on innovations that will further transform the lives of our customers,” Sitoyo added.

The milestone comes only eighteen months after Safaricom and Vodacom launched the M-Pesa Africa Joint Venture to boost service delivery. In July, the joint venture’s sales stood at Ksh3.1 billion ($28.2 million).

M-Pesa’s customer base, which encompasses more than half a million business entities, reported transactions worth over $7 billion every month, furnishing the growth of formal digital financial inclusion across the continent.

In June, Safaricom unveiled the M-Pesa Super app, one of the service’s latest innovations in the form of Mini-Apps, that empowers customers and businesses to accomplish tasks such as asking money from friends, family, or people who owe them and accessing government services in one app.

Moreover, the fifty million customers can send money to multiple users of the money service, pay for insurance and buy tickets for trains, buses and concerts.

M-Pesa was launched in 2007, initially as a two-sided network for Individual-to-Individual money transfer, that expanded to accommodate Customer-to-Business (C2B) and Business-to-Business transactions (B2B).

During their financial year ending March, Safaricom disclosed that Lipa Na Mpesa, a platform that enables merchants to collect payments from customers using a till number, witnessed increased popularity in the cashless COVID-19 environment. It earned M-Pesa Ksh40 million per month in revenue, accounting for close to fifteen per cent of the Ksh6.53 trillion payments passing through M-Pesa as at March.

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