Safaricom Ethiopia’s M-PESA mobile money service went live in Ethiopia on Wednesday.
The service will enable customers to send and receive money, pay bills, buy airtime, and access other financial services using their mobile phones.
M-PESA, which means “money” in Swahili, is a widely used mobile money platform in Africa, with more than 51 million customers across seven countries.
The service has been credited with transforming the financial landscape in the region, especially for the unbanked and underbanked populations.
Safaricom Ethiopia received the Payment Instrument Issuer License from the National Bank of Ethiopia in May 2023, after winning a telecom license in a competitive bidding process.
The company has invested over $850 million to roll out its network and services in the country, which has a population of over 110 million people.
Stanley Njoroge, Interim CEO of Safaricom Ethiopia, said that M-PESA will provide a safe and secure platform for transactions and will contribute to the digital inclusion and innovation goals of the Ethiopian government.
“M-Pesa is known to be a game-changer for financial inclusion,” said Stanley Njoroge, Safaricom Ethiopia’s interim CEO.
“We will continue to broaden the services our customers receive from the M-PESA platform that will improve the quality of life for our customers. M-PESA will play its part in fast tracking Digital Inclusion and promote innovation outlined in the Digital Payments Strategy 2025,” he said.
In the first month of its operations in Ethiopia, Safaricom Ethiopia generated Sh 98.3 million.
Safaricom Ethiopia Service Revenue for the period ended September 30th, 2022 was Sh 9.1 million while total revenue, including handset sales, was Sh98.3 million.