Kenyan M-PESA agents to get business loans

Feb 11, 2011

Small businesses acting as agents for mobile banking service M-PESA in Kenya can now apply for bank loans to fund expansion.

The move is the result of a new deal between the KCB Bank Group and mobile phone service provider Safaricom and means such firms can access unsecured loans of as much as five million Kenyan shillings (€45,450), the Daily Nation reports.

Announcing the move yesterday (February 10th), Chief Executive of KCB Martin Oduor-Otieno explained the new initiative "has immense capacity to grow and yield the right level of returns to investors".

Businesses that apply will be able to borrow a figure based on the amount of commission they bring in from acting as an M-PESA agent and will pay 1.5 per cent interest per month on the money.

M-Pesa is one example of the success mobile banking is having across Africa. A recent study by Juniper Research revealed the industry is expected to be worth $22 billion (€16 billion) by 2015.