WorldRemit, an international digital money transfer service business has signed a direct partnership with Safaricom. The move will secure and provide instant mobile money transactions across borders. These services will be available for the twenty-eight and a half million registered M-Pesa users in the country. This will is an added advantage to Safaricom as the leading mobile money service in Kenya and draw in more customers who need to receive money from persons abroad.
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The partnership makes mobile money transfer accessible to Kenyans, many of whom have relatives in the diaspora. The service will also support the 10 million WorldRemit users. Safaricom continues to build its portfolio of joint partnerships with international money transfer companies. WorldRemit has had incredible growth and success, with a 50pc growth year on year to serve its customers. Kenyans abroad continue to be the biggest mobile to mobile senders. Making WorldRemit one of the biggest remittance companies serving the Kenyan diaspora.
Remittances play a big role in the Kenyan economy, with the central bank of Kenya recording a whopping record value of $1.95 billion. Making it one of the country’s top earners. To date, approximately 3 million Kenyans, live abroad, with the majority in North America, Europe, and Australia. The top noted remittance sending countries are Germany, UK, Australia, Canada, Australia and the Nordic region.
Safaricom made a statement on the partnership that they are happy with the transformation the new partnership poses for their millions of users. Having WorldRemit as a key partner provides customers with a world-class experience to send, receive and make seamless payments.
WorldRemit also pointed out the timeliness of their partnership, at a time when both companies recognize the impressive growth in the international remittances board to M-Pesa accounts, as well as the company’s leading position in mobile money transfer. The partnership is set to enable a close working relationship to serve both local customers and those abroad to engage in mobile money transfers conveniently.
WorldRemit is currently connected to approximately one-fifth of all the mobile money accounts globally. Giving it an impressive portfolio, currently having 74pc of all international remittances from money transfer providers to mobile money accounts go through their systems. Their customers also make 1 million remittances a month using their mobile app and website.
Mobile money services in Kenya is a booming industry. M-PESA reports indicate that the money flowing among Kenyans is sky high. In the last financial year, M-PESA recorded a revenue of 63 billion Kenya shillings. This is a 14% growth that has taken place year on year for the past few years. Mobile loan apps, and another loan financing service have been on the rise in Kenya. Several new companies now offer loans within 24 hours with collateral. There are also a number of new initiatives in the fintech space. For example, branch international has received momentous success since its introduction in the Kenyan market.
Safaricom made its mark with M-Shwari, the first of its kind to roll out loan services via mobile in Kenya reveals that it has disbursed 230 billion shillings since it started back in 2012. To date, an estimated 12.1 million Kenyans, use mobile apps for loans. Specifically, for small business activities. The huge numbers involved has pushed many companies to initiate such apps to loan service businesses.
In the wake of the new financial year, mobile money transfers received news of the implementation of increased taxes. The excise duty on mobile money transactions will be increased from 10%-12%. The Minister for Treasury Henry Rotich confirmed the increment. Safaricom’s Chief Finance Officer Sateesh Kamath received the news by saying ‘the news laws would reverse the gains made in the recent past through mobile led financial inclusion’.
This means that the more money mobile money transfers make from remittances, the more money the government makes from excise duty applied to their services.