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Bob Collymore's legacy

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Cloudflare caused a major Internet outage yesterday which affected iAfrikan as we also use their serv
 
July 3 · Issue #38 · View online
iAfrikan Daily Brief
Cloudflare caused a major Internet outage yesterday which affected iAfrikan as we also use their services. As such, there was no newsletter yesterday as it wasn’t sent as scheduled. - Tefo Mohapi

The second half of 2019 started on a sombre note for Africa’s technology ecosystem as early on the morning of 1 July 2019 it was confirmed that Bob Collymore, CEO of Kenya’s Safaricom, had passed away. Collymore had been undergoing treatment for Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML).
In his life he had mentored and inspired many, not to mention his numerous achievements. Notably, it is under his leadership as CEO of Safaricom from 2010 that saw the now popular mobile money service. M-PESA, flourish and almost single-handedly define what we now know as financial inclusion.
Collymore’s career in the telecommunications industry can be traced back to 1993 when he worked for various companies in the sector in the United Kingdom. He would later move to Vodafone Group in 2000 until being appointed CEO of Safaricom, a subsidiary of Vodafone in 2010. He took over from Michael Joseph (who has been now appointed acting CEO of Safaricom).
Although it was under Joseph’s tenure that M-PESA was launched on 6 March 2007 in Kenya, it was under Collymore’s management that it really took off and became the mobile services provider’s key money making service.
The numbers speak for themselves.
Undoubtedly, the mobile money service has revolutionized the remittances and payments space in in Kenya, expanding access to retail financial services in ten countries with an estimated 29,5 million active users processing up to 614 million transactions per month (as of 2017).
At the end December 2016, M-Pesa had a network of more than 287,400 agents. During 2016, the service processed around 6 billion transactions, peaking in December 2016 at 529 transactions every second. During the same financial year, just to give you an idea, $31 billion was transacted on M-PESA in Kenya alone. During 2018, mobile money transactions in Kenya accounted for close to half the country’s GDP, with M-PESA accounting for lion’s share of this.
There are other professional achievements that Collymore has achieved, but the legacy of M-PESA in Kenya is one he can be proud of.
May his soul rest in peace.
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