Vodacom and Safaricom in a bid to buy M-Pesa brand from parent company Vodafone

Vodacom

Vodacom and Safaricom are in the process of buying the M-Pesa brand from parent company Vodafone, in a deal reportedly worth over R190 million. Vodacom mentioned the deal in its recent full year results announcement, saying it expected the acquisition of the popular mobile money service to “further accelerate our mobile money growth plans in Africa”. Vodacom group CEO Shameel Joosub confirmed the plans in an interview with ITWeb, saying Vodacom, through a joint agreement with Safaricom, has done a deal with Vodafone to “take over M-Pesa completely”. “So, Safaricom…

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Echotel International cleared to acquire iWayAfrica

South Africa-based integrator of advanced network and cloud computing services Echotel International Proprietary Limited has received the green light from the Competition Authority of Kenya (CAK) to acquire 80 percent of iWayAfrica Kenya. Echotel, through its subsidiaries, provides wireless connectivity services while the target provides retail internet access, Virtual Private Network (VPN), and online security services. Locally, the multinational resells Internet connectivity, VPN and online security services. It provides services via a multi-carrier converged network, to simplify the complexity of aggregating infrastructure to clients. iWayAfrica Kenya (iWayKenya), provides fixed line…

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Koko Energy firm Launches ethanol burners to be refuelled using Smart ATMs

Koko Energy firm Launches ethanol burners to be refuelled using Smart ATMs

Energy solutions firm Koko Networks has unveiled a two-burner ethanol stove for low-income households as it seeks a piece of the cooking gas business. The specially-designed cookers will retail at Sh7,000 and come with a refillable smart canister with a capacity of 2.3 litres that dock with KOKOpoints, which then dispense fuel they have pre-purchased by topping up their KOKO accounts with M-PESA. They then take their smart canister home to dock into their KOKO Cooker, a modern, high-power 2-burner ethanol stove that delivers affordable cooking energy, safely and conveniently.…

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Facebook looking to launch own crypto-currency in 2020

By AGENCE FRANCE PRESSE, LONDON, United Kingdom, May 24 – Facebook has been in contact with US and British financial regulators with a view to launching its own crypto-currency next year, the BBC reported on Friday. “GlobalCoin” would work with a new digital payments system in about a dozen countries, starting in the first quarter of 2020, the broadcaster said on its website. Previous reports have said Facebook is taking a serious look at blockchain technology under its “Project Libra”, in part to tackle doubts about privacy among its many…

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Google cuts ties with Huawei, to stop licensing its Android OS to the Chinese phone maker

Alphabet Inc’s Google has suspended business with Huawei that requires the transfer of hardware, software and technical services except those publicly available via open source licensing, a source familiar with the matter told Reuters on Sunday, in a blow to the Chinese technology company that the U.S. government has sought to blacklist around the world. Holders of current Huawei smartphones with Google apps, however, will continue to be able to use and download app updates provided by Google, a Google spokesperson said, confirming earlier reporting by Reuters. “We are complying…

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Microsoft opens first Africa Development Centres in Nairobi and Lagos

It was almost three decades ago that Microsoft opened its first offices in Africa. In this time, they witnessed incredible growth on the continent – more internet connectivity, more digital capability and more innovation. Africans have expanded the applications of technology, changing the way communities bank, farm and even access healthcare. As the next step on Microsoft’s journey in Africa, and to better understand a continent rapidly adopting technology in the cloud, and at the edge, Microsoft launched its first Africa Development Centre (ADC). With two initial sites in Nairobi,…

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Tencent and Alibaba licenced to compete world’s biggest banks to offer Hong Kong banking

Tencent and Alibaba are set to compete with some of the world’s biggest banks including HSBC and Standard Chartered as Hong Kong opens up its market to online competitors. The Hong Kong Monetary Authority has issued virtual banking licences to China’s top technology groups, adding to the growing number of companies that have already been approved to provide digital services in the Asian financial hub. China’s Xiaomi, the world’s fourth largest smartphone maker, and PingAn, the world’s largest insurer, were also granted a licence on Thursday by the city’s banking…

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Ethiopians in diaspora allowed to invest in banking, insurance sectors after a precedence setting court victory in 2017 by Sophia Bekele

“Sophia took up the gauntlet and headed to the court to vindicate her right” The National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE), the agency in charge of regulating the financial sector of the country, will soon introduce a new regulation that will allow Ethiopians in the diaspora to invest in the financial sector that includes banking, insurance and micro finance. The Council of Ministers during its extraordinary meeting approved the Draft Banking Business Proclamation, allowing Diaspora citizens to establish banks in Ethiopia. This was indicated by Yinager Desse (PhD), Governor of NBE,…

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Amazon retreats from its China business in defeat, could it also mean anything for its India market?

Is it possible that the almighty Amazon, global dominator of all things retail and pulveriser of hapless competitors, has finally conceded defeat in China? It certainly seems that way, as the US-based global e-commerce Goliath announced it would bring the curtain down on its Chinese marketplace business in July and will revert to offering only overseas products to domestic Chinese customers. “We are notifying sellers we will no longer operate a marketplace on Amazon.cn, and we will no longer be providing seller services on Amazon.cn effective July 18,” the company…

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WorldRemit joins mobile money provider Paga to allow direct pay to 11 million Nigerian accounts

International cash transfer company WorldRemit signed an agreement with mobile money provider Paga to allow direct payments to 11 million additional accounts in Nigeria. In a statement the global remittance company said the move “considerably grows” its footprint in the country, which opened new channels to its users in more than 50 countries transferring money to citizens in Nigeria. According to figures cited by WorldRemit, Paga is the country’s widest-reaching mobile money company with more than 14,000 agents present across 36 states. Approximately $26 billion was transferred into Nigeria during…

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