End of Safaricom Dominance


Yeah, CA invited the public to a seminar on the same. I however, doubt that Safaricom can be split.


splitting safaricom is not a good idea… The best way to solve this issue is letting mpesa shops allow depositing and withdrawal by other telcos… but safaricom takes a cut. likewise, the only other way these Telcos can beat safaricom is listing on the NSE… in my opinion. When people feel they own something, there is always a better chance of loyalty (and if they solve network issues).

If I was a telco owner, My first step would be ensuring clients especially in urban areas do not experience downtime (like faiba has done, though 700 mhz band helps them set up fewer boosters with more coverage- the lower the frequency, the longer the wavelength, duh!?). The second step would be making consumers feel like they own the company (am sure each one of you is proud of safaricom, regardless of its high charges, and seeing it go down would be painful :laughing: ).

The problem with these telcos is they focus so much on advertising themselves, only for a person to get low quality services when he or she decides to hama. The first impression is always the most important. when I tested faiba for the first time and found out it had low latency even when playing online games, I knew nimefika. When I tried Telkom for the first time after so much hype, guess what I got, with full bars signal, telkom had downtime every now and then. alafu ma time nikinunua data ina expire ka sijatumia ata nusu cuz network ata cbd lazima ukue place poa… argh…


I agree,being a shareholder of Safaricom i always seek to engage their services whenever i can because i feel connected with them.The other operators have enticing offerings but terrible customer services.


It’s already in testing phase not sure about depositing but withdrawals juu transfers ni from one network to another bila njia ya mkato.

These networks nikama wale walikua wanalala kwa class then question why wenye wamepita mtihani walipata leakage or walitumia mwaKenya. When Safaricom is working hard, they’re busy promoting free SMSs and Calls forgetting such services will soon use them like postal and telegram services.

Even if you chose to opt in their free calls and sms, the network is pathetic. Nakumbuka telling a Telkom CC who had made a follow up call akiniambia sauti yangu inakatika katika ana expect niseme nini yet that is enough information needed to confirm that network is pathetic.

Same case with Airtel. 1999 internet speeds and massive call drops and resending of sent sms kila mara.


This is the kind of disruption that we need.


500bob for unlimited calls + unlimited data at 8mbps, that’s a sure deal


Can we examine this issue from a Microsoft-Apple’s point of view? Back in the 90s when Apple was on the brisk of collapse, Bill Gates pulled a surprised move and invested $150 million in Apple. However, Bill Gates did not invest physical cash.

What did he do? He allowed Mac PCs and laptops to be bundled with Microsoft’s productive software, Microsoft Office. But that was not all, he forced Apple to bundle PCs and laptops with Internet Explorer ouch! In exchange, Apple gave Bill Gates non-voting shares worth $150 million.

The $150 million worth of shares would be now worth $50+ Billion. But what did Bill Gates do? He sold them in 2003 after Apple sorted out its mess.

But was Bill really saving Apple? No! He wasn’t! At that time, Microsoft was facing anti-dominance complaints that threatened to split the company. Basically, Microsoft had over 98% of the PC market share both at the personal and corporate level.

So Bill decided to invest in Apple and all those entities that were pursuing Microsoft for dominance claims, including the Department of Justice, decided to drop the hot pursuit for the company.

So what can we learn from Microsoft-Apple debacle? Well, I was thinking, instead of having Airtel Money, T-Kash, Faiba Money, Safaricom can allow these companies to run Mpesa straight from the simcard. Safaricom can then decide to pay a commission to these companies.

Second, Safaricom should formulate National Roaming plans. To allow other network users to leverage on their wide network coverage at a fee.

It will be a win-win. Watu waache kubeba simcard ya Mpesa for those that don’t have smartphones and people of other networks that live in inadequately covered regions.


Why would Safaricom just give away its competitive advantages?


The same way Microsoft did with Apple. It’s not giving away in actual sense, but sort of parasitic. I would prefer to use Telkom/Airtel/Faiba for data and Mpesa than walk around with separate simcards just to transact with mpesa.


You would prefer to use airtel,faiba and orange for data…Well Safaricom thinks you should also use their data,SMS and calling services, not just Mpesa.


Well,Kenya is a tricky market,Safaricom services and products all rely on them having control over the physical and software infrastructure that means everything from SIM cards to MPESA platform…it is true that some safaricom products have become ubiquitous to the extent that competing with them is becoming harder but going forward safaricom can lose dominance with the right strategy at the right time with the right players involved.The future is data,that means the company that wins in the future going forward is one that captures as much data traffic from the user as possible…i.e,Office internet,Home internet,On the go internet…That means,having visibility on the consumers use of data on all three aspects,if you have this you win…coz you can analyze these trends and make the most out of new products and services tailored to serve these angles i.e Safaricom Internet at work through enterprise,Safaricom Home Internet,Safaricom Mobile data…You see whats happening there,it means making recurring revenue from users monthly through direct/indirect subscriptions,also this data traffic can be used to increase safaricom’s advertising revenue(which is very low i m sure) through new ad platforms/products targeted at the subscribers…Unfortunately safaricom top management knew all this things so they are currently executing on this strategy hence the rapid growth of Home fibre and Enterprise…


Actually Microsoft in addition to guaranteeing continued support for office(not bundling) and the internet explorer bundling deal also actually invested cold hard cash in the deal, $150 Million of it. That cash infusion went a long way in putting Jobs back in the Apple CEO seat which he had been fired from.

Safaricom as a licensee of Mpesa doesn’t have the rights to approve a deal that would put Mpesa on other networks sim cards. That power lies with Vodafone. Vodafone I feel is not really interested in letting others cannibalise its babies ARPU and a key competitive edge so this might just remain a pipe dream.

National roaming is a good idea especially in rural areas though I’m not sure it can be implemented without passing on an additional roaming charge to the end user.


And the calls for dominance continue…


I think Telkom’s idea of sharing mobile money agents is necessary. However, I still defend Safaricom when it comes to the declaration of dominance. All these Telcos started on a level playing field. In fact, Safaricom was the last one to enter the market. Telkom and Kencell were there before.

Telkom’s CEO is more aggressive than any other CEO the company has had. His hard work is paying off. It’s just a matter of time before the tables turn.


Agreed, Telkom in it’s current form has significantly improved their services.

I recently setup a corporate account with them and the entire experience was impressive. My account manager brought an entire sales and technical team even before a contract was signed. The only concern I had was that the sales guys were unaware Safaricom offers cheaper fibre than them.

Overall Safaricom might have a serious competitor for once.


We said this with AIrtel and faiba and now telkom, truth is safcom is years ahead of the peers, at the moment I am sure safaricom has the cheapest and the widest home fiber, Telkom has the potential but it’s under utilized
Their covergae although improved is still 3rd behind airtel which by all means is poor.
but in 5 years telkom might be a force, they might want to go into home fiber because as of now only safaricom is expanding, faiba seems to be interested in wireless with their fiber seeing very few signups, zuku has been bleeding customers and airtel seems uninterested


Airtel have only ever tried to undercut Safcom on price. And I say that as a former Kencell subscriber.

The same applies to JTL, Orange, Yu, Zain and all those other clowns.

Telkom in its current form is an entirely different animal.


Interesting for a person in such a docket. Being unaware of what the competition offers is a serious crime. It’s not that serious though :joy::joy::joy:

They have improved significantly. Ever since I had a rant with their CEO on Twitter, their customer service is top notch nowadays. They acknowledge complaints and escalate them. Before they had perfected the art of denial. I’m glad that the changes are being experienced across the board.

Telkom has Radio, I’m not sure if it is WiMax or not but that is product they have really underutilized. It was cheaper during times of Orange but Telkom raised the price. That is another product that can be great for home internet to people that are away from Fiber.

I can’t believe that I haven’t used Faiba for months now :sweat::sweat::sweat:
Ever since Telkom upgraded Timbuktu with 4G the speeds are super awesome. I also like the fact that I can extend the validity of bundles by purchasing a lower-tier bundle on Telkom. So I buy 2GB today, ikifika kesho kama sijamaliza I buy 25MB (I think they removed it) or 80MB daily to extend the 2GB’s deadline.

Airtel nao madeni zimewalemea. I think.


Wueh I had to show them the Safaricom website. They were convinced I had gotten a deal. :grin:

Their customer support and the company culture has improved from the Orange days. The only time I’ve raised an issue, they followed up with a phone call and a site visit.

As a consumer I’ll say that we need that level of competition.