Safaricom interim CEO Michael Joseph on Wednesday that he would focus on expanding financial services business Mpesa beyond Kenya.
In an interview with Reuters Joseph said,” I’m particularly keen to work closely with the team to take M-Pesa beyond Kenya.”
M-Pesa, which was, launched more than a decade ago serves more than 22.6 million people in Kenya and has been replicated abroad. M-Pesa, which allows users to send money, borrow, save, and pay bills even on a basic mobile handset, has been the key driver of the company’s profit growth in recent years, helping pick up the slack in data and voice revenue streams.
Joseph added that he would lead the company in an interim capacity while the board found a permanent CEO. Safaricom is partly held by South Africa’s Vodacom and Britain’s Vodafone.
Michael Joseph took over East Africa’s most profitable company in July following the death of long-serving CEO Bob Collymore. According to Reuters, Collymore had in May talked of the intention to buy intellectual property of M-Pesa from Vodafone for $13 million to allow expansion in Africa. Safaricom’s joint venture with Vodacom will make significant savings in royalties paid to Vodafone.
Joseph added that he would focus on data business to achieve a balance between consumption and revenue growth.