Safaricom is planning to expand M-Pesa mobile money across Africa

Safaricom hopes to spread across Africa. Credit: Reuters/Noor Khamis

Safaricom is planning to take its successful mobile money service M-Pesa across Africa after building a dominant home base in Kenya and presence in its East African neighbors.

The news came after UK’s Vodafone Group transferred its 35% stake in Safaricom to its South African subsidiary, Vodacom. Subject to shareholder and regulatory approvals, the proposed transaction will cost Vodacom 34.6 billion rand ($2.6 billion) in exchange for the stake.

Safaricom, Kenya’s largest telecommunication company, said it gave “appropriate assurances” to the government of Kenya—which owns a 35% share in the company—about the deal. Vodafone will also retain a 5% stake in Safaricom, while 25% of the shares are on a free float being traded in the stock market.

Read more: Safaricom’s deal with Vodacom South Africa will help drive M-PESA to other markets in Africa — Quartz