Mobile payments platform M-Pesa has topped 50 million active users – measured by monthly active customers – telecommunications group Vodacom said on Tuesday.
Vodacom said this “cements” M-Pesa’s position as the “largest fintech platform” in Africa. M-Pesa was developed by Vodacom parent Vodafone and deployed 14 years ago in Kenya by Safaricom, where it has enjoyed enormous success.
Since then, it has been expanded to Tanzania, Mozambique, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Lesotho, Ghana and Egypt. It was also launched in South Africa some years ago, but Vodacom pulled the plug on it due to insufficient consumer uptake.
“The number of active M-Pesa customers has doubled in the past five years,” said Vodacom, adding that the 50 million user milestone comes 18 months after Safaricom and Vodacom launched the M-Pesa Africa joint venture to accelerate its growth across the continent.
M-Pesa transaction volumes increased 44% year on year in the first quarter of Vodacom’s current financial year – April to June. The number of transactions grew to 4.5 billion in the quarter – with a total transaction value of almost R1.1-trillion.
Despite these numbers, Vodacom Group CEO Shameel Joosub said M-Pesa is still in the “early stages” of its evolution.
Safaricom and Vodafone launched M-Pesa in 2007 in Kenya as a way for customers to send money to each other instantly. “For many customers, the service became their first and often only access to financial services propelling its fast growth and adoption across the country,” Vodacom said. – © 2021 NewsCentral Media