On October 7th, Safaricom shared 4 images on Twitter. One of the 4 would become the new M-PESA logo, they said. Kenyans on Twitter had different reactions, and suggestions as usual.
Well, the company has today announced the new M-Pesa Logo. But it’s temporary. For the next 7 days, the logo with Eliud’s name and 1:59 (Time the Greatest Marathoner is looking to run) will be the service’s logo.
In an official release, Safaricom has said, they’re dedicating their iconic M-PESA brand in support of Kipchoge’s superhuman endeavor. Over the next seven days, the company will rebrand M-PESA to “Eliud 1:59” to commemorate the challenge.
Safaricom will also provide a free YouTube bundle on the day of Kipchoge’s race. From 8 AM to 4 PM, all Safaricom customers can stream the race live on their phones at no cost. The bundle will be accessed by dialling *159# upon which a customer will receive a free YouTube bundle, allowing them to stream the entire race at no cost
“We are honoured to renew our commitment with Eliud Kipchoge and to support him as he races against time. As part of our support, we will be empowering any Kenyan across the country to stream the challenge for free, wherever they are, with the advantage of our strong network and wide coverage. For every Kenyan, Kipchoge is a reflection of our resilience and determination as he has taken on challenge after challenge,” said Michael Joseph, CEO, Safaricom.
To rally Kenyans in their support for Kipchoge, Safaricom will enable all its customers to send free messages voicing their support for the athlete during the race by sending a text to 159. The messages will be displayed live on broadcast TV feeds during the race.
“The last few years have seen Kipchoge emerge not only as one of the greatest athletes ever, but also as one of the most accomplished people ever. It is a privilege to partner with him on this historic occasion and as an icon, it is only befitting to offer our M-PESA brand in his recognition,” added Michael.
Kipchoge’s partnership with Safaricom dates back to 2017 when the company launched its “Twaweza” brand campaign with the marathoner taking the role of brand ambassador.
M-PESA was launched in 2007, and turns twelve this year. It is the biggest mobile money solution in the world. The service is available in other countries across the world including India, Afghanistan, Romania, Tanzania, Lesotho, DRC, Ghana, Mozambique and Egypt. Just yesterday, M-PESA was ranked 9th Most Influential Project Worldwide, beating Netflix and Google Search.
In the year ended 31st March 2019, according to Safaricom Full Year Results, M-PESA accounted for the most growth with revenue up by 19.2% to KES. 74.99 Billion. The Fuliza overdraft facility, which became a total hit, saw Kenyans borrow over KES 81 Billion through M-PESA in just 6 months.
Safaricom together with Vodacom earlier this year announced plans to buy M-PESA rights from the UK’s Vodafone. The $13 Billion deal is expected to be completed before the end of this year, and would give Safaricom and Vodacom an easy way to expand across markets in Africa.
What are your thoughts on this move?