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Safaricom, Vodacom Completes Ksh1.4bn Acquisition of M-Pesa from Britain’s Vodafone

Safaricom, Vodacom, acquire M-Pesa

Kenya’s telecom firm Safaricom and South Africa’s Vodacom, has completed the acquisition of mobile money platform M-Pesa from Britain’s Vodafone.

In a joint update on Monday, the acquisition will accelerate M-PESA’s growth in Africa by giving both full control of the M-PESA brand, and product development.

“The transaction, which was first announced in 2019, will accelerate M-Pesa’s growth in Africa by giving both Vodacom and Safaricom full control of the M-Pesa brand, product development, and support services as well as the opportunity to expand M-PESA into new African markets,” they said in a statement.

Shameel Joosub, Vodacom Group CEO, says, “Our joint venture will allow Vodacom and Safaricom to drive the next generation of the M-PESA platform – an intelligent, cloud-based platform for the smartphone age.”

Michael Joseph, outgoing Safaricom CEO says: “This new partnership with Vodacom will allow us to consolidate our platform development, synchronise more closely our product roadmaps, and improve our operational capabilities into a single, fully converged Centre of Excellence.”

 

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M-PESA is the largest payments platform on the African continent, it has 40 million users and processes over a billion transactions every month. 

M-PESA is operational in Kenya, Tanzania, Lesotho, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, Mozambique and Egypt. Currently, around 25% of all M-PESA customers have access to a smartphone – a figure that is growing by 10 per cent every year.

In 2019, M-pesa was ranked 9th most influential project in the world over the last 50 years by the Project Management Institute (PMI).

M-pesa was launched in 2007, to allow customers to use simple text messages to send money, make deposits and withdrawals, and purchase airtime minutes.

According to PMI, this is a first-of-its-kind ranking for PMI that celebrates the most impactful projects from the past 50 years and highlights how project management has helped turn these ideas into reality.

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