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Video: M-PESA, Kenya’s Mobile Banking Solution

April 24, 2013  »  VideoNo Comment

Kenya continues to pave the way when it comes to the future of mobile banking. Google’s hopes to get in on the payment market action in developing countries.

A recent video by Bloomberg examines how Safaricom’s M-PESA became adopted by so many Kenyans. Also touched on is how Google’s Beba is expanding its presence in parts of Africa.

Highlights of M-PESA’s rapid adoption in Kenya include:

  • The mobile phone is people’s first interaction with technology in a meaningful way
  • Data is becoming much cheaper: 1MB can be had for 1 US cent
  • 90% of web users access the Internet through a mobile phone – Ndemo
  • 60% of M-PESA users have no bank account
  • Enables mobile phone to work like a debit card with a pre-paid account connected to the mobile phone
  • M-PESA is the most significant change to banking since the credit card – Hersman
  • Low transaction costs are a major benefit of mobile payment systems, but limited international reach is still a hurdle

The video also mentions how Google is trying to expand Beba, its cashless payment card system, in the developing world. Beba is now being trialed on Nigerian buses and it has been accepted on Citi Hoppa buses in Nairobi since 2012. Still, don’t expect M-PESA to lose market share in Kenya any time soon.

Finally, it’s worth pointing out the impressive group of Kenyan tech experts who provided the information to Bloomberg:

  • Erik Hersman, Founder, iHub
  • Nikolai Barnwell, Manager, 88mph
  • Dr. Bitange Ndemo, Secretary of Information and Communication
  • Paul Kukubo, CEO, ICT Board of Kenya
  • Mugo Kibati, CEO, Kenya Vision 2030