M-Pesa (M for mobile, pesa is Swahili for money) is a mobile-phone based money transfer and microfinancing service for Safaricom and Vodacom, the largest mobile network operators in Kenya and Tanzania. Currently the most developed mobile payment system in the world, M-Pesa allows users with a national ID card or passport to deposit, withdraw, and transfer money easily with a mobile device.
If you’re South African, you probably have some idea of what it is, but in South Africa it’s nothing compared to what it is in Kenya and what it ended up doing to retail banking in that country. It comprehensively disrupted the entire industry. It’s a fabulous story of genius, innovation and everything you hope never happens in your industry.
Recently I found this video outlining what it is in Kenya along with some of it’s story. Definitely worth a watch.