M-pesa, data, SMS drive Vodacom revenue

Monday November 18 2019

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A Vodacom retail store. The use of mobile payments has grown in Tanzania with customers having access to more points of sales, paying utility bills, government tariffs and even school fees. PHOTO FILE | NATION 

BEATRICE MATERU
By BEATRICE MATERU
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Vodacom Tanzania earnings rose by 6.5 per cent in the six months to September 2019, driven by strong revenue growth in its M-Pesa, mobile data and messaging services.

M-Pesa revenue increased 15.9 per cent to Tsh182 billion ($78 million) from Tsh157 billion ($67.4 million) in the same period last year, while data revenue was up 17.4 per cent to Tsh91.2 billion ($39.1 million) from Tsh77.6 billion ($33.3 million) in 2018.

Messaging revenue grew by 11 per cent, from Tsh19 billion ($8.16 million) to Tsh21 billion ($9 million) in the six months to September.

Mobile voice revenue dropped by one per cent from Tsh196.6 billion ($85.2 million) in September 2018 to Tsh194.7 billion ($84 million) in Spetember 2019.

“Our key strategic growth pillars, being M-Pesa and data, continued to deliver good results despite intensified competition in the market. Looking ahead, we continue to make good progress on our key growth pillars. We are pleased with the 764,000 net customer additions during the period,” said Hisham Hendi, the managing director of Vodacom Tanzania Plc.

M-Pesa now contributes 34.4 per cent of the company’s revenue. “We continue to add new services to the platform to expand customers’ payment options and make transacting more accessible by increasing our agent network,” said Mr Hendi.

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The use of mobile payments has grown in the country with customers having access to more points of sales, paying utility bills, government tariffs and even school fees.

Vodacom said Tsh29.1 trillion ($12.5 million) was transacted on M-Pesa in the first half of the year, adding that the service has expanded to micro-loans, merchant payment systems and increased interconnection with banks and other operators.

According to the Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority, Vodacom leads the mobile money market at 41 per cent, followed by TigoPesa at 30 per cent, Bharti Airtel (Airtel Money) with 18 per cent and Halopesa from Vietel Halotel at seven per cent and Ezy Pesa from Zantel at two per cent.

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