Kenya’s mobile network operators, Telkom, Safaricom, and Airtel, announced today that Kenyans can now make direct mobile money transfers from either network to an M-PESA Pay Bill Number. This follows the telecoms’ April statement that Kenyans would be able to make mobile money payments to M-PESA Buy Goods and Services Tills from any network.
The goal of Kenya’s mobile money service platform interoperability is to allow Kenyans to make direct mobile money payments to any M-PESA merchant Pay Bill Number and Merchant Tills from any network, hence increasing the adoption and ease of cashless payments. Kenyans will make mobile money payments from M-PESA to the Till and Pay Bill Numbers of the other networks, Airtel Money and T-kash, in the next phase toward complete merchant interoperability.
This proposition is also consistent with the principles of the Central Bank of Kenya’s National Payments Strategy, 2022-2025, which was launched in February of this year with the goal of achieving a secure, fast, efficient, and collaborative payments system that supports financial inclusion and innovations that benefit Kenyans.
“From our interactive sessions with our customers we have taken note that Kenyans appreciate mobile money solutions better when they keep on finding more reasons to attach value to their mobile wallets, whether they are sending money, paying for goods and services, saving, borrowing or trading. The announcement made today, on Pay Bill interoperability, brings us closer to realising a cashless economy, further enhancing a seamless digital transactions ecosystem that gives the consumer more convenience and choice. Our customers will first be able to access this exciting addition via USSD *160#.” Telkom Kenya’s CEO, Mugo KIBATI says:
Safaricom’s CEO, Peter NDEGWA said, “Today’s launch of Pay Bill interoperability between M-PESA, Airtel Money and T-Kash, follows that of ‘Send Money’ and Till interoperability. This innovation extends even more convenience to customers and businesses, transforming M-PESA into a one-stop solution to send and receive money and payments from any financial service locally, and our global partners.”
“We are excited to be part of this change that seeks to provide Kenyans with an affordable, convenient and secure cashless payments platform that will provide more options that empower customers as they go about their day-to-day economic activity. Our customers can access this service via USSD *222# or *334#.” Airtel Kenya’s CEO, Ashish MALHOTRA said.
The telcos made this announcement at the Muguga Green Primary School, where they each made a payment of KSh. 300,000 into the school’s Pay Bill number from their spokesperson’s respective mobile money wallets. The money, KSh. 900,000, will be used by the school to meet some of its operational needs for the second school term of the year.