How M-Pesa disrupts entire economies

March 9th, 2012  |  Source:

Back in 2011, I was asked to give my thoughts on what I thought would trend in mobile within between then and 2020.

One of my predictions was that: “Mobile money will shift economies on a large-scale and across borders.”

It came as an interesting discovery to learn therefore that according to recent Africa Development Bank (AfDB) research, increased uptake of M-Pesa, which is the literal mother of mobile money, is said to be contributing to inflation in Kenya. Inflation was a major problem in the Kenyan economy in 2011, having hit a high of 19.7% towards the end of the year.

It seems we have already got to that point where mobile money is becoming a matter of concern for national economies. According to an article in a Kenyan business paper:

Increased uptake of M-Pesa, Kenya’s dominant money transfer service, has fuelled inflation as the service grew large enough to influence implementation of monetary policy, an African Development Bank (AfDB) study claims.

Recently speculation broke out on Kenyan online business forum Wazua that Safaricom, Kenya’s top mobile and M-Pesa operator, would buy a bank.

Whether such speculations are true or not, one thing is for sure, mobile money has come a long way in a relatively short-term and it’s affecting economies at the household level but also at a national level. This area of M-Finance, as it were, will become an area of increasing interest in future.

Read the rest of this excellent blog here:

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