Nairobi, Kenya, Aug 21 – M-PESA, the flagship brand of the leading integrated communications service provider Safaricom Limited, has introduced a new rent collection and payment service dubbed Lipa Kodi na M-PESA.
Under the new scheme, customers will pay Sh6 for transactions of up to Sh5,000, in the graduated scheme that will see those paying rent of between Sh50,000 and Sh70,000 charged a transaction fee of Sh220.
Lipa Kodi (Kiswahili for pay your rent) is designed to offer convenience and cost efficiency to tenants, landlords and housing agents by providing them with a safe and reliable rent payment and collection mode.
The Telco is targeting to recruit estate agents, Diaspora-based landlords, county authority and private landlords in the next financial year.
“Lipa Kodi is yet another solution from Safaricom that seeks to broaden the financial inclusion agenda through the use of the mobile phone. Lipa Kodi is expected to redefine the payment ecosystem for Kenyans and how they meet their rental obligations,” said Safaricom’s General Manager for Financial Services, Betty Mwangi-Thuo.
Kenya’s rental market is valued at an estimated Sh17.2b, which is 21pc of the total value of the real estate market in Kenya. The 2009 census revealed that there were an estimated 6.5 million rental households in Kenya and with the rapid urbanization, this figure is expected to be higher. Statistics from the World Bank indicate that the average rent paid in urban centres in Kenya is Sh5, 898.
M-PESA has since inception continued to grow in terms of revenue’s bottom-line. Last year, M-PESA contributed 18pc of Safaricom’s total revenue.
The M-PESA service was launched in March 2007 by Safaricom Limited making Kenya the first country in the world to effect a successful mobile money transfer service.
The service has over 17.1 million customers and more than 65,000 agent outlets countrywide.
M-PESA customers can hold up to Sh100,000 in their M-PESA account at any one time, make transactions of up to Sh140,000 in a day and send as little as Sh10.
In November 2012, Safaricom Limited, in partnership with Commercial Bank of Africa (CBA) launched M-Shwari, a service which allows M-PESA customers to save money and get micro loans through their mobile phones at competitive market rates.