A mobile phone-based loan launched in early March this year attracted 1.8 million customers for Kenya’s largest bank KCB, its CFO told Reuters.
The bank is on target for 10 million users for its KCB M-Pesa service within a year, said Lawrence Kimathi.
The loan service appears to have enjoyed rapid growth: KCB reported in its Q1 results that the service had 1.4 million opt-in customers at end-March.
The service was developed in partnership with Safaricom, which runs the dominant M-Pesa mobile money platform in Kenya. The loan was marketed to millions of M-Pesa users.
KCB M-Pesa allows users to deposit cash and borrow up to KES1 million ($10,400) for up to six months via a mobile account.
“KCB has been able to increase its retail footprint by opening over 1.8 million new accounts,” said Kimathi. .
The bank has lent more than KES1.37 billion to more than 400,000 borrowers on the service, he said.