M-Pesa, a mobile money transfer platform run by Safaricom PLC has passed 50 million active users, with prior disclosures by Safaricom saying about 28 million of the active monthly users were in Kenya as of March 31 this year.
The milestone comes just 14 years since the launch of the service in Kenya and nearly 2 years since the launch of the M-Pesa Africa Joint Venture.
Safaricom launched the peer-to-peer money transfer service back in March 2007 from where the platform has since grown into a lucrative platform also offering customer-to-business and business-to-customer services.
The venture between Safaricom and its parent firm Vodacom has allowed M-Pesa to spread its presence to Tanzania, Mozambique, DRC, Lesotho, Ghana, and Egypt.
Safaricom and Vodacom acquired the M-Pesa brand and platform from their UK parent firm Vodafone Plc to form the joint venture, M-Pesa Africa, in April last year.
According to reports, the two telcos plan to grow M-Pesa beyond the existing markets, with plans to establish in Ethiopia currently underway after a consortium linked with parent firms obtained a license to operate in the land-locked country mid this year.
“We are delighted to celebrate this remarkable milestone with our more than 50 million customers across the continent,” Sitoyo Lopokoiyit, the M-Pesa Africa managing director, said in a statement on Tuesday.
In June, Safaricom launched the new M-Pesa Super app that enables users to ask for money from friends, family, or people who owe them money.
M-Pesa has driven Safaricom’s earnings in recent years contributing to about one-third of Safaricom’s service revenue in its fiscal year to March 31 or a representative Sh82.6 billion.