Safaricom and Pezesha Introduce Mkopo wa Pochi for Small Business Loans


Safaricom and Pezesha Collaborate to Expand Access to Small Business Loans

Safaricom, Kenya’s leading mobile network operator, has partnered with digital lender Pezesha to launch Mkopo wa Pochi, a new loan service aimed at small business owners. This addition to Safaricom’s existing loan products, including M-Shwari and Fuliza, allows entrepreneurs to borrow directly through their M-PESA business accounts.

Key Features of Mkopo wa Pochi:

  • Accessibility: Available through Safaricom’s M-PESA super app, Mkopo wa Pochi targets small business owners using Pochi la Biashara, Safaricom’s business wallet.
  • Partnership Strength: Pezesha leverages its expertise in digital lending, having partnered previously with entities like Marketforce and Rocket Health.
  • Cost Structure: Loans under Mkopo wa Pochi incur a one-time access fee of 2.76%, with a 7-day term and an optional 7-day extension available for a fee. Late repayments are subject to a 1% daily penalty for up to 7 days.
  • Credit Assessment: Pezesha assesses creditworthiness using data sources including credit bureaus, business transaction history with Safaricom, and mobile money account transactions.

Strategic Impact:

  • Market Access: Pezesha’s collaboration with Safaricom grants access to a vast customer base of over 32.4 million active M-PESA users.
  • Financial Growth: Safaricom’s Pochi la Biashara processed $564 million (KES 73 billion) in transactions, generating $6 million (KES 800 million) in revenue from March 2023 to March 2024, highlighting substantial market potential.

Recent Developments:

  • Pezesha secured a $500,000 grant from the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) in May 2024 to enhance its credit scoring technology, following an $11 million pre-Series A funding round led by Women’s World Banking Capital Partners II in 2022.

This initiative underscores Safaricom and Pezesha’s commitment to fostering financial inclusion and supporting small businesses in Kenya through innovative digital lending solutions.

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