NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 12 – Telkom Kenya has launched a revamped mobile money platform dubbed T-Kash which promises customers reliability, value and convenience with an initial outlay of 20,000 agents in urban centres.
T-Kash replaces Orange Money which was discontinued as part of the company’s rebranding and new strategic direction.
Speaking at the launch of T-Kash, Telkom Chief Executive Officer Aldo Mareuse says the new mobile money platform positions itself as a viable choice in a market currently dominated by Safaricom’s M-Pesa.
According to the Communication Authority’s quarter one report, 22.7 million out of the 28 million mobile money subscribers are M-Pesa customers.
But Mareuse remains optimist buoyed by Telkom’s rebranding and enhanced marketing activities which has seen the telco gain 1 million customers nine months after private equity firm Helios bought Orange Group’s 60 percent stake.
“T-Kash is a key feature of our product offering. By having a mobile money platform, which we believe is a superior product, we expect to see an acceleration of our growth,” said Mareuse.
Director of Mobile Financial Services at Telkom, Anuj Tanna, says the platform will inject transparency in the transactions by allowing users to see the cost of transaction before completing the process.
“Customers told us they want a hassle-free, convenient way of sending and making mobile payments and as a result, we have built in a feature that displays the name of a recipient before confirming a transaction which will limit transactional errors,” said Tanna, emphasizing the customer-centric approach Telkom took to develop T-Kash over two-years, spending Sh1 billion in the process.
Additionally, the mobile platform aims to cut the ‘buy goods’ process by doing away with till numbers and replacing it with instantly generated codes by customers.
The code is presented to a merchant or an agent who counterchecks the T-Kash Code on the vendor side.
Tanna says T-Kash will also make it easier for customers to pay frequently used accounts and paybill numbers using the favorites feature.
Information, Communication and Technology Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru has said the government will continue to encourage healthy competition in the telecommunications sector.
“Competition is not just about breaking people down. It is also about growing the size of the market…in all the talks we have had with the operators, their aim is to grow their sector, and we can assure you that we will see a bigger, better telecommunication’s market as we go on,” said Mucheru at the unveiling of T-Kash.
T-Kash is expected in the next few months to join M-Pesa and Airtel Money in the pilot phase of mobile money interoperability project that aims to lower barriers to transacting across different mobile networks.