Part UK owned Safaricom has launched M-Pesa Global which opens up their mobile payments service to the world.
The new service will allow anyone from virtually anywhere in the world to send money to an M-Pesa customer in Kenya.
Customers can access the new service by dialling *840# or by selecting “M-Pesa Global” under the M-Pesa menu on mySafaricomApp.
In addition to already existing channels, M-Pesa Global will immediately enable customers to send money for pick up at more than 500,000 Western Union agent locations across the world.
“This new service brings the convenience, safety and speed of M-Pesa to the rest of the world and will enable Kenyans to send and receive money across the world from the comfort of their mobile phones. M-Pesa Global seeks to connect Kenyans to opportunities by making it easy and seamless for them to transact with the world and for the world to transact with Kenyans,” said Sitoyo Lopokoiyit, Safaricom’s Chief Financial Services Officer.
Transfers through bank accounts to the United Kingdom, Germany and the United Arab Emirates will also be available immediately, with services to bank accounts in other countries being rolled out in the coming weeks.
With M-Pesa Global, Kenya achieves another first in enabling sending and receiving of money between mobile phones and virtually any individual across the world.
M-Pesa Global already allows customers to make and receive payments from more than 200 million PayPal customers from 200 markets across the world.
Other partners available on the platform include UK based World Remit and HomeSend, among others.
M-Pesa was launched 11 years ago as a simple money transfer service to fill a gap in Kenya’s formal banking network. It has since evolved into a fully-fledged financial service, offering loans and savings in conjunction with local banks, as well as merchant payments services.