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Safaricom posts Sh37 billion in half-year profits

Safaricom CEO Peter Ndegwa. [Wilberforce Okwiri, Standard]

Safaricom recorded a 12 per cent increase in profit after tax to Sh37 billion in the first six months of the 2021/2022 Financial year as business recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic spurred M-Pesa payments and data usage.

The telco’s M-Pesa revenue grew by 45.8 per cent in the first half (April-September), due to the return to charging in January this year.

The volume of Mpesa transactions grew by 42 per cent, totalling Sh7.3 billion, while the transaction value grew to Sh13.7 trillion.

Safaricom CEO Peter Ndegwa attributed the growth to digital financial services saying: “We continue leveraging on technological innovation to enhance access to financial services for consumers and enterprise customers.”

Data from the company’s latest financial reports also show that the company’s service revenue for the period under review grew 16.9 per cent to sit at Sh138.4 billion mainly driven by revenue from M-Pesa and mobile data.

“Service revenue grew 16.9 per cent in the first half-year of 2021/22 supported by strong execution, recovery in M-Pesa revenue following the return to charging on person to person and Lipa na M-Pesa transactions below Sh1,000, and improved consumer confidence and business activity in the economy,” Ndegwa said.

Voice revenue went up 3.2 per cent year-on-year to record Sh41 billion while earnings from short messages recorded an 18 per cent decline to Sh5.8 billion in the period under review.

Mr Ndegwa said the firm was optimistic about the future prospects including the firm’s entry into Ethiopia scheduled for next year.

“We are currently in the process of setting up our operations, preparing detailed plans for operational readiness amongst other requirements ahead of our commercial launch next year,” said Ndegwa.

The firm is planning to invest Sh222 billion into the country over the next 5 years after getting the license to roll out nationwide telecommunications services.

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