Safaricom is currently celebrating two decades in the telecoms space in Kenya.
The operator, which has continuously amassed subscribers and profits in equal measure, is one of the most popular telcos in the continent, having supplemented mobile telephony with other business and lifestyle products and services that have changed lives.
Safaricom has always lauded itself for its constant innovation. Products such as M-PESA have made a notable mark even on the global stage, and its current market share is near 99% in a space that has other competitors such as Airtel Money and T-Kash by Telkom Kenya.
Today’s occasion has also seen the carrier announce Pochi La Biashara.
The new product is targeting business owners who may not have pay or pay bill numbers, but want to separate payments from their personal M-PESA account.
The product is interesting because often, customers usually send cash to personal M-PESA accounts of food vendors, small kiosk owners, boda-boda operators, second hand clothes dealers, name them, who do not have a business line (Lipa na M-PESA).
This means that finally, they can receive and separate business funds from their personal account.
According to Safaricom, interested business owners can easily sign up; no paperwork is involved.
“Customers can conveniently make payments directly to the business owner’s Pochi La Biashara. Business owners will be able to separate their business funds and personal funds allowing them to use business transactions to make better business decisions,” reads a statement by the operator.
Similar to Paybill, payments cannot be reversed unless the business owner approves the transaction.
At the same time, business owners can choose to sell airtime and earn 5% commission on value sold.
Lasty, mobile numbers will not be displayed on M-PESA messages for Pochi La Biashara payments, meaning the business owner will not see personal information such as phone numbers (this has always been an issue with business payments that are made directly to the owner’s personal M-PESA line).
How to use Pochi La Biashara
The business owner may:
- dial *334#
- choose Pochi La Biashara
- Opt in
Afterward, the business owner will be able to see the menu to access their funds under Pochi La Biashara. M-PESA pin is used to authenticate
For customers wishing to make a payment:
- Dial *334#
- Select Pochi La Biashara
- Enter business mobile number
- Make payment
The normal M-PESA fees will apply (for sending money) and withdrawal (for business owners).