Kenya’s Safaricom uses mobile money for solar power

Kenya’s leading mobile operator Safaricom has announced that it will begin to allow subscribers to use the M-Pesa mobile money transfer system in order to pay for a solar-powered lighting system in the country.

Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore (image: file)

The new deal will give users the ability to purchase the environmentally sound and cheaper electricity unit via installments.

According to the payment plans, once a user pays an initial KES 2,500 deposit they will then be required to pay KES 40 per day for one-year in order to acquire the M-Kopa Solar device.

M-Kopa Solar’s Managing Director Jesse Moore said customers “will not be able to use the lighting system if they default on their daily installments, as they will be switched off via the embedded SIMs.”

Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore said that “the hire purchase model is targeting 3 million Kenyans who are dependent on kerosene for lighting.”

Moore added that once clients have paid their installments in full, “they will be able to light their homes free of charge, adding that they can make money through the device by charging up other people’s mobile phones for a small fee.”

Mohammed Awad