Safaricom To Lower Mpesa Charges From This Date
Telkom Kenya a telecommunication company in Kenya, have taken a petition to the court seeking the regulatory bill through the Parliament to compel Safaricom company to lower the Mpesa charges for transfer to other networks.
The Safaricom company has been enjoying a monopoly in the market for mobile money hence the introduction of other tariffs like Airtel Money and T- Kash.
However, Safaricom has been using all means possible to remain on top of the game. This is because the company is discouraging its customers from transferring money from Safaricom to other platforms.
This is majorly done by raising the charges for transferring money from Mpesa to other platforms almost three times as compared to when you transfer money from a safaricom line to another Safaricom line.
This strategy of different pricing has helped Safaricom to continue attracting more customers and other platforms are left out because the benefits of using them are minimal.
Transferring money from Mpesa to another Mpesa Safaricom line is far much cheaper compared to across the network. This is to mean transferring money to an unregistered user is expensive compared to when it is transferred to a registered user.
This form or way of competition is not fair to other platforms considering that Safaricom has been in existence for a long and has been stable all through. Airtel on the other hand has been struggling to succeed and has gone through several challenges and changes.
With the way things are it is not easy for other platforms to win or attract customers from Safaricom. Due to this and other reasons, rival companies may collapse leaving Safaricom to continue dominating.
Safaricom’s rivals have presented their petitions to the Senate committee. The key areas of concern include:
✓ Lowering the charges for Mpesa transfer to other platforms(make it uniform for registered and unregistered users).
✓ Lowering the call rates per minute to other networks.
✓ Increasing the maximum amount of money that can be transferred from Mpesa to other networks per transaction from the current 35,000.
✓ Safaricom is to be declared as a dominant player because of its large market share of above 50% by the relevant authorities.
Telkom company says that Safaricom is dominating in all mobile services and regulators must take action to prevent rival companies from collapsing.
Safaricom defended itself in its submission to the same committee saying that it is not dominant and that there is healthy competition in the mobile service industry. Each player can increase their market share through innovation and heavy investment.
If Regulatory agencies put into consideration the petitions, Mpesa charges across other networks could be reduced to favour the growth of other companies.