Telkom Kenya is planning to introduce mobile-banking services by the end of this year in partnership with Main local bank.
According to the Communications Commission of Kenya, East Africa’s Mobile-phone operators are spreading into banking products to solve the problem of the country where four out of every five people don’t have a bank account. Penetration of mobile phones in Kenya is about 51% in a population of 38.6 million,
According to Snehar Shah, head of Orange Money, the company is providing a much richer product than competitors. The service will allow users to send money from abroad, carry out electronic banking, and pay for goods and services online, as well as transfer funds locally. It will be backed by strategic partners, declining to name them.
Telkom Kenya is also set to compete with Zain Kenya, country’s second- biggest mobile-phone operator, the local unit of Bharti Airtel Ltd., who holds the money-transfer service called Zap. Essar Telecom Kenya Ltd. operates a version of the system called YuCash.
In July, 11.9 million people in Kenya used their mobile phones to send and receive cash through the mobile money transfer service M-Pesa initiated by Safaricom Ltd. in March 2007.