Kenya’s telco giant Safaricom has tapped Citi Bank’s managing director Mr Michael Mutiga to heads its strategy and acquisitions, in its bid to have a larger share of the financial services market.
Mutiga who is also the head of Citi Bank’s corporate finance for sub-Saharan Africa will become the new chief business development and strategy officer at Safaricom.
He joins the telco when it’s in dire need of regulatory approvals to launch insurance, unit trust and saving products as it competes for a larger piece of the financial services market and to earn more from M-Pesa, its mobile money transfer platform.
Mutiga will replace chief of special projects and acting chief business development and strategy officer Joe Ogutu who retired in April after being with the company for 17 years.
He is joining Safaricom when its mobile money platform M-Pesa has overtaken voice to become the biggest revenue earner due to its positive growth since it was launched in 2007.
“He will lead our business development and transformation agenda, and will be responsible for strategic partnerships, mergers, and acquisitions; Safaricom’s funding strategy and asset optimization,” said Safaricom CEO Peter Ndegwa.
The telco is brainstorming over new ventures as voice services continue to decline. It is foreseeing a situation where M-Pesa will account for half of its sales as revenues from voice and SMS flatten.
M-Pesa overtook voice in the financial year ended June 2021 to become the single largest business line when it posted the highest revenue growth of 45.8%t to Sh52.3 billion.
Safaricom plans to expand M-Pesa offerings and bolster its data business to cover decline in revenue from voice and SMS.
It will use the new products as part of the strategy to broaden M-Pesa into a financial service provider that will compete with banks, insurance firms and fund managers.
Safaricom has been testing three new products namely, Bima (Insurance), Mali (mobile savings) and a unit trust investment product.
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