Vodacom Tanzania International Mobile Money Transfer Service M-Pesa netted TSh102 billion (Ksh4.8 billion) globally between March and June 2020,cementing the global growth of the platform.
International transfers increased by 300 percent in the period while remittances hit TSh16 billion (Ksh742 million), a 44 percent increase in the same quarter.
“We continued to widen our partner network, with the launch of “Mama Money” and “Remitly”during the quarter, which enabled customers to receive money from South Africa,” said Vodacom in a regulatory statement to the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange (DSE).
The Telco recorded a rapid network expansion resulting in more clients with an enhanced user data experience.The company saw an additional 421,000 clients bringing the number of its subscribers to 14.7 million as of June 30, 2020, an increase from the 14.3 million subscribers at the same time in 2019.
The customer base however, shrunk by 770,000 during the same period, a five percent decrease in the last quarter. This is most likely an attribute of the mandatory Biometric SIM card registration enforced by the authorities.
In a statement, Vodacom said that it 439,000 to its M-Pesa client base, but also barred 800,000 existing customers in Tanzania in the last quarter, following the rules set by the Tanzania Communication Regulatory Authority.
“We now serve 7.1 million M-Pesa customers, marginally lower on year-on-year basis,” read the statement. As at June 2019, M-Pesa customers were at 7.3 million.
Songesha, an overdraft product by Vodacom TZ, enabled over 1.5 customers access Tsh50 billion (Ksh2.3 billion).
“We enhanced this product to include multiple facilities to customers that saw more than 385,000 customers accessing this service.”
Data customers also decreased by 4.8 percent to 7.7 million after 600,000 data customers were barred in the last quarter following the same SIM card registration rules.
“Our $25 smart-feature phone dubbed “Smart Kitochi” performed well, with a total of 30,000 customers empowered with access to an enhanced data experience.”
Vodacom Tanzania said that the impact of Covid-19 on the business would be known soon, while SIM card registration remains a factor.
The company revealed that 2.9 million customers had been barred from the service between January and March 2020, and 745,000 others reconnected.
It said 2.1 million SIM cards, generating more than Tsh4 billion (Ksh185 million) a month, are yet to be registered biometrically.
Vodacom said it was in the process of complying with the rues set by the TCRA for an extension plan for unused data bundles following Tsh400 million (Ksh18.5 million) payment in fines made in June only.