Rapid Communications a fully owned Kenyan company has gained 16 percent stake in Somalia’s Nationlink Telecom, a GSM operator, to enable it roll out virtual banking services.
The service will allow the mass market in Somalia to access various banking products virtually through the mobile phone-Rapid communications currently manages the content management system (CMS) platform for Nationlink Telecom.
Rapid is eying Somali remittance business estimated to be over Sh 176 billion ($2 billion) annually. The service will run on the back of E-mal mobile wallet solution currently deployed in Somalia.
Speaking after the deal signing, Rapid Communications Chief Executive Officer, Anwar Hussein, said Rapid intends to tap into its network of over 5000 outlets in Europe, Middle East and the US offering diaspora market remittance and banking products.
“With the success of mobile banking in Kenya, Rapid Communications hopes to replicate the same services to the masses in Somalia,” said Anwar.
The deal will see Somalia benefit from expertise of mobile banking and remittances solutions already successful in Kenya.
“We are using Kenya as a success case study on mobile banking, to implement the same in the ready Somalia market. We are relying on Rapid to make mobile banking a success in Somalia,” said Nationlink in a statement.