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M-PESA set to pioneer ‘Standing Orders’ feature disrupting the mobile fintech industry

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Safaricom‘s Chief Information Officer, George Njuguna, has unveiled a groundbreaking development for M-PESA, marking a significant milestone in the mobile money industry.

M-PESA, the renowned mobile money platform, is gearing up to introduce Standing Orders, a feature that will set it apart as the world’s first mobile money platform to offer this functionality.

This move comes despite standing orders being a common feature in traditional and neo-banking products.

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Mr Njuguna emphasized the significance of this initiative, stating, “This is the first initiative where you will have standing orders on a mobile platform – a global first, not limited to Africa. We plan to extend its use to other sectors, such as healthcare, to enhance accessibility and affordability.”

The introduction of Standing Orders within M-PESA is poised to revolutionize how users manage recurring payments and transfers. This new feature empowers users to establish automated, scheduled payments from their mobile money accounts to individuals, businesses, or services, ensuring timely and effortless payment of bills, rent and other recurring expenses.

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M-PESA has steadily evolved to encompass a wide array of products and services, spanning payments, savings, and credit access.

Among its offerings are bill payment services like Lipa na M-PESA and Buy Goods, making the firm ideal candidate for users to set up standing orders, simplifying the process of automatically settling utility bills, rent, and other regular expenses on designated dates.

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Additionally, M-PESA provides various credit facilities, including M-Shwari, KCB M-PESA, and Fuliza (an overdraft facility).

The introduction of standing orders will play a pivotal role in ensuring prompt loan repayments.

Traditionally, Standing Orders have played a crucial role in savings and investments.

Safaricom offers similar products such as KCB M-PESA and M-Shwari for savings, as well as Mali, an investment product.

Integrating Standing Orders with these services could facilitate regular transfers of a portion of a customer’s balance into investments or savings.

Notably, last year, Safaricom collaborated with VISA to launch a virtual card exclusively for online payments, providing Kenyan customers with the ability to make payments for services like Netflix through M-PESA.

The introduction of feature here could streamline payment settlements, eliminating the need for manual intervention in every transaction.

While specific details regarding when Standing Orders will be available to users and the implementation process have not been disclosed by Safaricom, this innovative addition is set to further enhance the M-PESA experience.

In the fiscal year ending in March 2023, M-PESA demonstrated remarkable revenue growth of 8.8%, reaching Sh117.19 billion ($816 million). Although this fell short of the previous fiscal year’s results, Safaricom attributed the decline to macroeconomic factors.

Following the successful go-live of M-PESA services in Ethiopia recently, Safaricom has signed a partnership with Ethiopia’s Abay Bank.

Through this collaboration, all M-PESA customers in Ethiopia are able to deposit and withdraw cash at all Abay Bank branches. Customers of Abay Bank will enjoy the convenience of keeping track of their finances via Abay Bank’s mobile banking through USSD (*811#) and mobile app using their Safaricom 07 line to transfer money from their Abay bank account to their M-PESA wallet and vice versa, pay bills, check account balances, purchase airtime, and access other mobile banking services from the bank.

Customers with a Safaricom line are required to visit their nearest Abay Bank Branch with a valid ID card to integrate their Abay Bank account into their Safaricom lines.

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Diana Mutheu
Diana Mutheu
Diana Mutheu is a Tech enthusiast, happy to delve deeper into the African tech space covering Social Media, AI, Startups, Telcos, Cryptocurrency, Big Data, Women in Tech and all matters Tech. Write to me @[email protected]

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