Mobile Commerce enabler DOCOMO Partners with Safaricom to Launch first App Store Integration with M-PESA.

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Global mobile commerce enabler, DOCOMO Digital has partnered with Safaricom to give customers the option to pay for content on the Google Play Store using M-PESA.

The integration, which is powered by DOCOMO Digital’s mobile commerce enabling platform using Google Play’s payment API, allows M-PESA customers to use the mobile money service to pay for goods and services from the app store.

The service is available to more than 27 million M-PESA customers in Kenya with an Android smartphone or tablet. From today, customers matching this criteria can purchase content and products from the Google Play Store and pay for them using M-PESA. The solution seamlessly combines Google Play with the M-PESA purchase experience that Safaricom customers are used to when paying for goods and services.

Hiroyuki Sato, CEO of DOCOMO Digital, commented: “One of our biggest goals is to break down barriers and develop ways in which the 5 billion global adult population can engage with the digital ecosystem. M-PESA has long been an innovator and leader in the mobile money space, and we are very excited to partner with them to bring this service to market. First steps like this are absolutely essential on the journey to connecting consumers, merchants, operators and service providers together to create a fair and inclusive ecosystem for everybody.”

The M-PESA and Google Play Store service will ensure that users are able to buy apps and games in Play Store, using their mobile money wallet.

Joseph Ogutu, Director of Strategy, Safaricom, said: “Partnerships have been instrumental in deepening the convenience and value of M-PESA to our customers. Today’s partnership will empower our customers to access Google Play content and further underlines our commitment to providing more choice and convenience to them.”

Mahir Sahin, Head of Africa, Android Partnerships, Google, said: “We are thrilled to partner with Safaricom to bring Google Play carrier billing to Kenya. M-PESA has successfully demonstrated how important it is to offer financial services to the unbanked and deliver financial inclusion. Carrier billing is very important to the developer ecosystem in markets where credit card penetration is low. With this partnership M-PESA will play a critical role in the app ecosystem.”

About DOCOMO Digital
DOCOMO Digital is a provider of a global payments platform to leading OTTs, merchants and content providers. It is a fully owned subsidiary of the Japanese mobile operator NTT DOCOMO. DOCOMO Digital is headquartered in London but is a global company having presence in 35 offices across six continents.

About Safaricom
Safaricom transforms lives. We provide voice, data, financial services and enterprise solutions for a range of subscribers, small businesses and government, using a variety of platforms. We delight over 29.5 million subscribers, providing over 200,000 touch points for its customers and offering over 100 different products under our portfolio. Listed on the Nairobi Securities Exchange and with annual revenues in excess of Kshs 200 Billion, Safaricom invested Kshs 38 billion in infrastructure this year, providing over 80% of Kenya’s population with 4G and 3G coverage and providing 2G coverage to 95% of Kenyans. Safaricom has harnessed its proprietary fibre infrastructure to build a dedicated enterprise business, which provides managed IT services to clients in the East African region. Safaricom pioneered commercial mobile money transfer globally through M-PESA, the most successful service of its kind anywhere in the world. Launched in March 2007, M-PESA now has over 27.8 million customers and over 148,000 M-PESA Agent outlets countrywide.

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