Safaricom and mSurvey Launch Consumer Wallet To Measure Kenya’s Cash and Digital Economy

Consumer Wallet
Head of Research, design and strategy at mSurvey Aimee Leidich (center) explains to Safaricom Senior Manager Research and insights Paul Omondi about mSurvey consumer wallet. Looking on is Lead data Products mSurvey Samu

Consumer Wallet

Safaricom, which has been working together with mSurvey, has launched a solution called Consumer Wallet, an online, mobile platform that uses SMS to map offline consumer spending habits and trends. The research-based platform will take advantage of mobile phone penetration and messaging services to measure and quantify Kenya’s cash-based economy and encourage modern and real-time data collecting techniques over dated methods that are mostly time-consuming and tedious.

Having launched the product in beta with clients and corporate partners such as McKinsey Consulting firm in March 2017, mSurvey and Safaricom will use the telco’s vast network of existing data and subscribers to measure offline cash-based spending habits. Afterward, the data will be fed into the newly-created Consumer Wallet database for benchmarking purposes.

It has been postulated that the Kenya will have about 40 million consumers by 2030, with 35% of them being in informal setups. To put this in perspective, 6 out of 10 workers in both rural and urban area do informal jobs. According to McKinsey, data about such consumers is scarce, which is why many businesses are faced with the challenge of tailoring consumer-specific insights. With the help of Consumer Wallet, businesses stand a chance of eliminating present information gaps in order to diversify their business, with a better understanding of how consumers spend money, their competition and the knowledge how future cash habits will occur.

Consumer Wallet 1
Safaricom HOD Research and Insights, Victor Ikawa addressing audience on Consumer Wallet.

“Consumer Wallet addresses a pressing business challenge by providing real time collection, assessment and analysis of data. With the world currently undergoing an information revolution, it is essential that businesses in Kenya have the tools that offer the same advantages as those in Silicon Valley,” said Sylvia Mulinge, Director – Consumer Business, Safaricom.

The Consumer Wallet will capture information from daily text messages to monitor and map cash-based spending on Safaricom mobile subscribers. Preferences and expenditures will be pegged on housing, transport, food and education, to name a few.

The product, which will benefit from mSurvey’s data research function and Safaricom’s resources and distribution network will be available on a subscription and license basis.

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Kenn Abuya is a friend of technology, with bias in enterprise and mobile tech. Share your thoughts, tips and hate mail at [email protected]