Kenyan operator Safaricom and Vodacom Group of South Africa have announced that they have completed the acquisition of the M-PESA brand, product development and support services from the UK’s Vodafone Group through a newly-created joint venture. M-PESA is the largest payments platform on the African continent; it has 40 million users and processes over a billion transactions every month. It is operational in Kenya, Tanzania, Lesotho, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Ghana, Mozambique and Egypt. The transaction, which was first announced last year, 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.
‘For Safaricom, we’re excited that the management, support and development of the M-PESA platform has now been relocated to Kenya, where the journey to transform the world of mobile payments began 13 years ago,’ commented Michael Joseph, outgoing Safaricom CEO, adding: ‘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.’