Mobile Cash deposited electronic wallets of Kenyans reached KSh 888, 157,500, 354 in the three months ending September 2020, driven by the use of mobile cash as a means of fighting the spread of COVID-19.
Latest figures from the Communications Authority(CA) for the period shows that deposits in Safaricom’s MPESA platform were KSh 886. 2 Billion compared to KSh 1.92 Billion in Airtel Money accounts and KSh 20.96 Million in Telkom Kenya’s T-Cash vaults.
The value of person to person transfers hit KSh 895.9 Million through MPESA compared to KSh 488.8 Million with Airtel and KSh 86 Million on the T-Cash platform.
As at 30th September 2020, active mobile money transfer subscriptions and mobile money agents stood at 31.8 million and 245,124 respectively.
The values transacted on mobile money platforms have surged in recent months as more Kenyans use mobile cash to curb curbing the spread of COVID-19.
SIM CARD HOLDERS
In September, Kenya’s active sim cards holders were 59.8 million. This is an increase from 57.0 million subscriptions reported at the end of June 2020.
This translates to mobile (SIM) penetration of 125.8% during the period under review.
Between June and September, there were 2.8 million additional SIM cards, up from 1.8 million additions recorded by the end of June 2020.
The Communication Authority(CA) attributes this substantial growth to an intense smartphone device financing service campaign, “Lipa Mdogo Mdogo”, run by Safaricom PLC, designed to enable low-income earners to acquire smartphones.
Further, the revision of the on-net rate by Airtel from KSh 2.3 per minute to KSh 0.57per minute for all Tubonge packs could have enticed new customers.
MOBILE CASH TRANSFER WAIVERS
The Central Bank of Kenya(CBK) in December decided not to renew the waiver imposed on mobile cash providers not to charge any transaction fee for amounts of less than KSh 1,000. This is after the mobile phone companies recorded poor business due to the waivers.
While the waiver has been lifted, commercial banks are still required not to charge any fees for transfers between bank accounts and mobile wallets.