Facebook billionaire turns to Kenya's M-Pesa in search of next growth milestone
Facebook’s billionaire founder was after the crown jewel in East and Central Africa’s most profitable company, Safaricom: M-Pesa. Dressed characteristically nonchalantly in a grey T-shirt and blue jeans, Mr Zuckerberg laid out his intentions plainly. “I am here to learn about mobile money.” And to drive the point home to a group of star-struck journalists and start-up founders on the second floor of Nairobi’s Bishop Magua building, Zuckerberg gently alluded to Kenya’s wilful blindness. “For folks who spend a lot of time in the entrepreneurial ecosystem here [in Kenya], it may be hard to appreciate just how advanced the Kenyan system is over others, and I think there are a lot of lessons we can learn to help build services for people in the rest of the world,” he said.
Kenyans depend and spend on M-Pesa with a frequency that is often forgotten.
Last year, Sh14 billion was transacted through M-Pesa. Every day. To put this amount in context, what Kenyans transact in just three days would be more than enough to build another Thika superhighway.
This disruption of the financial and payments system is M-Pesa’s greatest selling point, and is likened to US Silicon Valley disrupters Uber (transport), Airbnb (accommodation) and Facebook (social interaction). In the last decade, Facebook has moved from a web platform that allows friends and families to keep in touch and share what is happening in their lives, to a company that seeks to exploit the future needs of social network users. Zuckerberg’s most expensive acquisitions, like Instagram, WhatsApp, and Oculus VR, are geared towards linking the social network platform to photo-sharing, instant messaging and virtual reality, respectively.
Source: Click On Image