Monday, April 14, 2008

Can Mpesa do a 'safaricom'

If i recall well, safaricom was an experiment by Telkom Kenya to provide cellular phone services. the offices were tiny and the service was exclusive. everyone probably knows the story though so no need bothering with it. fast forward, 2008, mpesa which is supposed to be safaricom's product for mobile money transfer seems to be suggesting to its 'mum' that it already has the balls to go it alone. if the queues at mpesa joints , the partnerships with major players and the adverts are anything to go by, am seeing that this product may soon just become a company on its own and move away from home. already postapay which is also a very good service is feeling the pinch given the convenience that comes with mpesa. but on top of it is the additional benefits of paying bills from the comfort of your bed, bar, office or even car. (even in a wedding actually) that, besides being safer than carrying an atm card in case you are mugged. more benefits of mpesa were clear during the january violence when safaricom's priced airtime was hard to come by and some people actually sold them for double their value. those with mpesa simply bought airtime conveniently from the phone. i am told some banks are also not very comfortable with the service since its bound to take away all those small savers and employers of casual workers. I think when considering safaricom IPO, mpesa will be one major thing to help you make up your mind.

other good stories are on the revelation of the cabinet. i am happy with the selections apart from mwakwere. we have too many problems and we needed someone with a will for this key ministry be it from PNU or ODM. mwakwere should have been put in the deputy mayors position (ministry of nairobi) which was comically given to mutula kilonzo. the other guy i find misplaced is michuki. hate him or love him, i think that old man is a performer. in just 2 months in roads ministry, we were already seeing a difference.

from ministers and deputy mayors to a sad story of mungiki reigning terror on nairobians. ati revenging the killing of the mungiki first lady. actually i never knew mungiki also felt pain. i was surprised to see them shed tears when that woman was killed. so thugs also cry?

from pain to fun, the project fame finally launched yesterday. it made me proud that 'we' Kenyans were able to broadcast 'live' to East Africa. the show looked sweet and beautiful. is it true that Tanzanians cannot speak English even if their fame depended on it or was that thing i saw stage managed?

still on entertainment and infotainment, the new CNBC Africa has become my stable channel but the best shows come late at night when they have this news comedy where they make fun of highly placed people. its just priceless!


  1. Project Fame launched yes, awful sound, mikes dying left right and centre, sub par lighting and hopeless direction for a live show notwithstanding. I hope the follow up shows shall learn from what did not go well in yesterday's show.

    I am a Jay Leno fan, his irreverent satirical show is at most times hysterical.

  2. @31337! wow what an name for the blogsphere! well i noticed that the mics kept on failing and the presenters made several blunders like Kagwa calling alice when the show was already over but somehow it never registered to me as something to disappointing. you must be a professional in these lines!

  3. I noted from the IPO prospectus that Vodafone owns the M-pesa solution and Safaricom pays them

  4. Hey Odegle,

    Long time lurker here. Great post on Mpesa. Nice to see you move away from politics slowly.

  5. @banks, nice info but still mpesa is a great plus to safaricom. What are your projections as far as your information on banking and prospects are concerned. How are they positioning themselves?

  6. @annon, He he. so funny. do you realize that talking politics is like quenching thirst with salty water? but once in a while we must make our voices heard.

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