M-Pesa, probably one of the pioneers of mobile money in Africa and the world has rolled out in Ghana in a drive to expands its operations into the big West African market. This announcement was made by Vodafone Group, with Ghana being the 11th market where the mobile money is rolling out thus far.
Vodafone Group embarked on carrying out dry-runs of the M-Pesa services in Ghana starting August 2015. Once up and running, M-Pesa will operate under the ‘Vodafone Cash’ brand.
Michael Joseph, the Vodafone’s director of Mobile Money, said, “Vodafone Cash extends the revolution of mobile money to Ghana, liberating our customers from the risks associated with carrying cash at all times.
The strong demand for the service following the pilot launched in August shows that Ghanaians greatly value the freedom, peace of mind, security and convenience that M-Pesa offers.”
According to Vodafone, 64 percent of Ghana’s population do not have access to the conventional banking services. That is about 15 million people! Through M-Pesa mobile money services, Ghanaians stand to benefit from the convenience and security of transferring money via their mobile phones and while on the move.
Other African countries where the Vodafone Group has deployed M-Pesa services include Tanzania, DRC, Lesotho, Mozambique and Egypt. Kenya was the pilot country where M-Pesa was first rolled out. Other countries outside Africa, include India, Romania and Albania.
Michael Joseph, who is also the former CEO at Safaricom, added: “Ghana is the last country in Africa where Vodafone has operations and where we had not launched the M-Pesa service. We did a soft launch mid last year before having the official launch early last month. While it is still too early to talk about success rates, the reception so far has been impressive.”
There are currently six different mobile carriers competing to serve the 27 million population in Ghana; Airtel, Tigo, MTN, Vodafone Mobile, Glo Mobile and Expresso.
MTN takes the lion’s share of subscribers in Ghana with about 15 million voice subscribers as per the August 2015 stats from the National Communications Authority of Ghana. Vodafone comes in at second place (albeit with a significant margin between) with 7.5 million subscribers. Tigo holds position three in the market with subscribers totaling about 4.1 million. Airtel is at fourth places with subscriber numbers slightly below that of Tigo.
Michael exudes confidence about M-Pesa prospects by saying, “Our main competitors all have versions of mobile money services, but we are confident about the quality of the M-Pesa service as has been demonstrated by its success elsewhere.
The strong demand for the service following the pilot launch in August shows that Ghanaians greatly value the freedom, peace of mind, security and convenience that M-Pesa offers.”