Four months ago, KCB and Telco Safaricom partnered to launch the KCB M-pesa account, a facility aimed at increasing financial inclusion through savings as well as issuing loans through Safaricom’s mobile money service M-pesa. A month after launch, KCB announced that they were able to register 1.5 Million users and issue a total of Kshs. 1 Billion in loans and over Kshs. 100 million in customer deposits.
During the announcement of its half-year results, KCB announced that they have since grown the number of customers using the service to 2.1 Million with Kshs. 2 billion issued in loans, which by all indications means growth for the last 3 months has begun to plateau. The facility is however issuing an average of Kshs. 130 million weekly in loans. The company CEO Joshua Oigara said KCB is seeking to deepen its partnerships across sectors with emphasis on telecommunications and government as it seeks to increase its clientele to 10 million. The Bank is also placing itself in pole position to take advantage of the growth in digital payments. KCB runs Pepea card, a payment card service used widely in transportation and offline payments.To increase its foothold in offline payments, KCB plans to capitalize on its vast distribution network that consists of 16,000 and growing point of sale terminals.
The KCB-Mpesa account allows customers to get loans using their mobile phones with repayment periods ranging from one month to six months at interest rates from as low as 2 per cent per month. Customers can also save using the account with two options of a fixed deposit account and a target savings account available. To achieve its goal of convergence in digital payments, mobile money services and offline payments, KCB is working on integrating its API with services such as M-pesa, merchant services which will seamlessly allow a user to move their money between their accounts, make direct payments and ultimately grow it into an ecosystem.