M-PESA (M for mobile, pesa is Swahili for money) is the product name of a mobile-phone based money transfer and branchless banking service, meaning that it is designed to enable users to complete basic banking transactions without the need to visit a bank branch. The continuing success of M-PESA, in Kenya, has been due to the creation of a highly popular, affordable payment service with only limited involvement of a bank. The system was developed and ran by Sagentia from initial development to the 6 million customer mark. The service has now been transitioned to be operationally run by IBM Global Services on behalf of Vodafone, the initial 3 markets (Kenya, Tanzania & Afghanistan) are hosted by Rackspace.
In September 2010, Vodacom and Nedbank announced the launch of the service in South Africa where it is estimated that there are more than 13 million “economically active” people without a bank account.
Interested? Read more at Safaricom Ltd!
- How Africans Shop With Their Cellphones (blogs.forbes.com)
- Cellphones transform Kenyan commerce (cbc.ca)