Mobile money and data have emerged as the lifeline in revenue growth for African-focused telecoms operators Vodacom Group and Airtel Africa across markets characterized by stiff competition and challenging regulatory regimes.
The two telcos this week released full-year results for the year ended March 31 that show impressive growth in mobile money and data earnings amidst near-flat increase in voice revenue.
This year, the companies are apprehensive of the impact of the Covid-19, something that has forced Airtel Africa to extend the maturity of $254 million of debt facilities by an average of 18 months in order to improve its liquidity.
South Africa-based Vodacom rode on its investment in Kenya’s Safaricom, which is Africa’s second-biggest telco by market capitalization, t
Estonia’s Bolt, one of Uber’s biggest competitors in the European ride-hailing market, has raised €100m (£88m) in funding to prepare for a post-coronavirus world.
This sees the total raised by Bolt top €300m, while its valuation has nearly doubled since May 2018, when it was valued at $1bn.
The funding round comes at a challenging time for Bolt, with the coronavirus causing a slump in demand for ride-hailing services that is believed to have had a severe impact on its bottom line. However, today’s news suggests that its efforts to diversify are paying off.
“Even though the crisis has temporarily changed how we move, the long-term trends that drive on-demand mobility such as declining personal car ownership and the shift towards greener transportation continue to grow,” said chief exec
Leading digital money transfer service WorldRemit has partnered with Vodacom Tanzania to enable nine million M-Pesa customers to receive money directly to their M-Pesa wallets from friends and family living abroad. The new service increases convenience for money transfer recipients in urban and rural areas of Tanzania as they can receive international money transfers directly to their phones, without the need for a bank account or internet connection.
Using the WorldRemit app, Tanzanians living abroad in over 50 countries, including the US, UK and Canada, can send money home 24/7 in just a few taps. This saves customers time and money as they do not have to travel to a traditional money transfer agent and pay expensive fees to send money home in cash.
Vodacom M-Pesa customers can now...
Apple Music launches Africa Month, a month-long campaign that showcases the best playlists, artists and albums from all corners of Africa. This follows the expansion last week of Apple Music into an additional 52 new countries around the world bringing the total number of countries across Sub-Saharan Africa to 33.
For Africa Month, Apple Music commissioned 15 exclusive guest playlists curated by some of the continent’s finest artists as well as a playlist featuring the biggest African songs of all time.
Grammy winner Angelique Kidjo (Benin), Afrobeats superstar Davido (Nigeria), Jazz icon Abdullah Ibrahim (South Africa) and Afro-pop group Sauti Sol (Kenya) are a few of the musicians who have curated playlists featuring their favourite African songs.
“African music is rich and dive
Pesapal will become a Visa Principal Member driving small business acquiring and issuing.
Nairobi, April 27, 2020 – Visa (NYSE: V), the global leader in digital payments and Pesapal have today announced a strategic partnership to drive connected digital payments to consumers and businesses in Africa. Pesapal will now become a Visa Principal Member driving small business acquiring and issuing.
Pesapal has created Africa's only payments ecosystem that offers Ecommerce, Point of Sale and Consumer applications on one platform. Pesapal recruits and supports businesses to be able to digitize payment collection securely while integrating to business internal systems such as POS, ERP, Accounting and Billing systems. By integrating businesses, Pesapal is then able to drive consumer paym
Kenya’s largest teleco, Safaricom, will implement a fee-waiver on East Africa’s leading mobile-money product, M-Pesa, to reduce the physical exchange of currency in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
The company announced that all person-to-person (P2P) transactions under 1,000 Kenyan Schillings (≈ $10) would be free starting Tuesday for the next 90 days.
The move came after Safaricom met with the country’s Central Bank and per a directive from Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta “to explore ways of deepening mobile-money usage to reduce risk of spreading the virus through physical handling of cash,” according to a release provided to TechCrunch from Safaricom.
To encourage the use of digital payments over cash, the East African telecom will also allow SMEs to increase their daily M-Pe
Lenovo has introduced the world’s smallest desktop, the ThinkCentre M90n-1 Nano to the South African market, designed to support diverse workplaces with the power of a full-size desktop and the space-saving convenience of a laptop.
“The ThinkCentre M90n-1 Nano is further proof of Lenovo’s commitment to helping small businesses drive efficiency in their operations,” says Thibault Dousson, General Manager at Lenovo South Africa.
“In South Africa, SMEs make up a third of the country’s GDP and play an integral part in boosting the economy and creating jobs. Lack of capital, investment, resources or support are among the major challenges faced by our country’s entrepreneurs. Lenovo wants to help entrepreneurs grow their businesses through giving them better access to critical tools and se
Gas refill can now be done with a press a button on your phone. Safari Clean Gas is turning into a ‘Uber’ of gas supply, removing consumers’ hassle in refilling gas cylinders. The firm delivers their products from 8am to 10pm within Nairobi. A report by the Ministry of Energy and the Clean Cooking Association of Kenya says some consumers travel as far as 5km to reach service centres.
“Households using LPG must travel nearly twice as far (5.3km) on average than kerosene users (2.9km) even though twice as many households nationwide cook with LPG compared with kerosene,” says the study dated 5 November 2019. Supa Gaz’s filled 6kg gas cylinder retails at Sh 2,200 if purchased from the USSD technology that automatically connects customers to their authorised, verified people.
Need to refi
Bookings Africa launched its new mobile app, which is believed to revolutionize the pan-African marketplace for the Gig economy. Bookings Africa is a leading pan-African marketplace that leverages technology to disrupt and revolutionize how talent in the lifestyle, entertainment & media industries across Africa is sourced. Founder and CEO, Fade Ogunro, announced the launch of the app and the successful completion of the company’s latest fundraising round.
Bookings Africa’s mission is to unlock the earning potential of young entrepreneurial Africans and monetize their latent skillset. Through the app, users can search for a variety of talent, compare their transparent prices, book online, pay securely and provide ratings and reviews for services across Nigeria, South Africa and Keny.
Over the past 10 years, technology has revolutionised our daily interactions, transactions and even how we think. It has progressed in almost every field imaginable, with the creation of amazing tools and resources that put vital information at our fingertips.
“If there is anything that has had an enormous impact on the lives of Kenyans, then it is the smartphone. It has revolutionised everything.
“Education, health, banking, media, agriculture, transport, communication and e-commerce all depend on the ubiquities of the smartphone to impact lives,” says Lilian Wanzare, a computer science lecturer at Maseno University.
In 2010, only a few Kenyans owned an Android-powered smartphone, despite its launch two years earlier, with the majority of the middle-class bragging to own ‘high-en
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