Safaricom, a leading telecommunications company in East Africa, is reportedly in talks to form a strategic partnership with global tech giant Apple Inc.
This was revealed by President William Ruto during the US-Kenya Business Roadshow in Silicon Valley (San Francisco).
“Safaricom is developing a partnership with Apple Inc. to integrate M-Pesa and the Apple Pay platform to expand the transaction reach of M-Pesa globally,” disclosed President Ruto.
Apple Pay is a digital payment solution from Apple that is designed to eliminate the need for cash and physical cards.
Apple Pay allows people to use their iPhone or Apple Watch when making contactless payments, while iPad and Mac owners can also make online orders using the same technology.
For Safaricom, it could mean access to Apple’s vast technological resources and global market presence.
For Apple, partnering with a dominant player like Safaricom could provide a valuable foothold in the Kenyan market and potentially the wider East African region.
While the specifics of the partnership are yet to be disclosed, it is expected that this collaboration could lead to innovative product offerings and enhanced services for Safaricom’s customers.
This includes potential access to Apple’s suite of products and services, which could significantly enhance the user experience for Safaricom’s customers.
According to M-PESA Managing Director, Mr. Sitoyo Lopokoiyit, over 70,000 developers have utilized the M-PESA Open APIs, enabling seamless machine-to-machine payment transfers.
M-PESA Global, a service of M-PESA, allows customers to transact in over 170 countries worldwide.
Recently, Safaricom announced a partnership with TerraPay, adding to a roster of more than 35 global partners.
In addition to its partnership with Visa, which enables customers to make virtual payments globally and businesses on M-PESA to receive payments from customers.
“Africa is rising, a continent of opportunity, growth, diversity, and youth and this creates a significant opportunity for M-PESA to leverage on its purpose to transform lives and empower businesses leading to a more inclusive and sustainable business,” says Sitoyo.
“With the rapidly changing world, we must lead in accelerating the transition to a new economy based on ecosystems that relate to the opportunities and challenges we face.”
“We are committed to harnessing the power of technology and partnerships to enhance M-PESA’s digital ecosystem.”
Subsequently, the US Ambassador to Kenya Meg Whitman termed M-PESA as the most impressive technology.
“It solved one of the biggest problems in mobile money; mobile, secure, locust payments…M-PESA is extraordinary. M-PESA alone can demonstrate the brilliant business minds that work in Kenya that are devising African solutions to global problems,” Whitman said.
Established on 6th March 2007 by Vodafone’s Kenyan associate, Safaricom, M-PESA is Africa’s leading mobile money service operating across the Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Mozambique, and Tanzania.