Kenya’s Safaricom eyes new technology, expansion into Ethiopia

Kenyan telecoms giant Safaricom is seeking to transform itself into a technology company, offering new financial solutions to anyone from small businesses to farmers, new CEO Peter Ndegwa told AFP.

Listed on the Nairobi stock market, Safaricom is one of the biggest companies in East Africa, its success fuelled by its mobile money service Mpesa, which was launched in 2007 and has become indispensable in Kenya.

Ndegwa, who was named the group’s new CEO following the death of Bob Collymore, said the future of Safaricom would come from “combining technology and innovation.”

“We want to move away from being a telecom business into a purpose-led technology company,” he said.

“That will mean that we will use technology to create change in other ecosystems in the same way that we have done with Mpesa in the financial services area, in areas such as agriculture, health, education.”

As an example, he cites

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