Regulator to force collaboration on Safaricom, rivals

27 NOV 2017

The Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) is set to introduce laws to impose mobile money service interoperability in the country after providers failed to deliver the change themselves, The Standard reported.

In an interview with the publication, CA director general Francis Wangusi said an agreement by operators to simplify fund transfer between brands had come to nothing, forcing the regulator to step in.

Its push for interoperability is part of a drive to increase competition and mobile money customer experience. It is also believed to be one of the key recommendations in a report by research company Analysys Mason into the Kenyan communications sector currently being assessed by the authorities.

Wangusi told The Standard the CA was set to make the report public and begin implementing recommendations within the next month.

A leak of the draft Analysys Mason report appeared earlier this year amid a number of statements from opposition politicians in Kenya calling for the break-up of dominant wireless operator and m-Pesa provider Safaricom.

Since its report, Safaricom continued to increase its leadership in both wireless subscribers and its m-Pesa customer base.

Latest CA figures show Safaricom held a 72.6 per cent market share in terms of mobile connections and 80.5 per cent of the mobile money subscribers in the country at end-June.

The Standard added Safaricom denied talks with other operators to introduce interoperability by July 2018 had broken down.

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Chris Donkin

Chris joined the Mobile World Live team in November 2016 having previously worked at a number of UK media outlets including Trinity Mirror, The Press Association and UK telecoms publication Mobile News. After spending 10 years in journalism, he moved...

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