Why Equity’s thin sim is giving Safaricom sleepless nights  

Equity Bank chief executive James Mwangi (left) and his Safaricom counterpart Bob Collymore. FILE PHOTOS |

What you need to know:

  • It is a move that sets forth a tough tussle between Equity and Safaricom, the telecoms market leader, for the control of millions of shillings transacted through phones daily.
  • The intensity of the ensuing fight has been clearly demonstrated in the past few months as the two corporate giants flexed muscles in a bid to influence the regulator’s position on whether or not the thin sim technology would be deployed in the country.
  • The two companies engaged in a battle that not only got the attention of the communications sector but also the Central Bank of Kenya and international organisations such as GSMA. Finally the battle ended up in Parliament. 

The approval of Equity Bank’s application to roll out telecommunication services using a new sim card technology last week is likely to kick-start a revolution in Kenya’s mobile money market that has for years been dominated by one player.


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