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Kenyans have saved Ksh18.7 billion in M-Shwari

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By Noel Wandera

Mobile credit facility, M-Shwari has locked in 450,000 customers with deposits of more than Ksh18.7 billion since the savings account was launched by the then Commercial Bank of Africa (now NCBA) in 2012.

The account allows
customers to save for a defined purpose and for a specified amount of time, and
is ideal for customers looking for higher interest rates and those wishing to
keep money away safely for one to six months.

The paperless banking
service is offered through M-Pesa, at a facility fee of 7.5 per cent per annum.

M-Shwari, which is
celebrating seven years, has been a game changer and today provides finan- cial
services to more than 31 million customers. It has also enabled them to manage
their daily cash flows, as well as deepening financial inclusion in the
country.

NCBA Group managing
director John Gachora said the average lock savings on the facility was Ksh8,981
for an average of 7.5 months, adding that the service has since disbursed more
than Ksh430.5 billion.

Business venture

“We are particularly proud
of the transformation witnessed among our M-Shwari customers with 42 per cent
of all our loan disbursements being invested in business ventures,” said
Gachora.

“I reaffirm our commitment
to continue playing a crucial role in providing life-changing financial support
to all our customers,” he added.

He said Kenyan households
that use M-Shwari are better savers, maintaining at least one week of their
home expenditures on M- Shwari lock savings.

Safaricom acting chief
executive Michael Joseph said the partnership with NCBA has enabled Safaricom
“deliver M-Shwari as a revo- lutionary innovation that provides millions of
Kenyans with formal access to credit and savings, many of them for the first
time ever.”

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