The report, released to mark the 10th anniversary of mobile money service M-PESA, shows that transfers to mobile money accounts make up 93% of WorldRemit transactions to Kenya. Other findings are bulleted below.
- In January 2017, WorldRemit customers transferred more than $140m (at annualised rate) to Kenya, making WorldRemit one of the largest remittance companies serving the Kenyan diaspora.
- Top remittance-sending countries are the UK, Australia, US, Germany, Canada and Nordic countries.
- Around three million Kenyans live abroad, with large communities in North America, Europe and Australia.
- Remittances play an important role in Kenya’s economy – inward remittances reached a record value of just under $161m in November 2016, according to the Central Bank of Kenya, making it one of the nation’s top earners.
“Kenya is famed for leading Africa’s digital transformation, and today it’s Kenyans abroad who are at the forefront of digitising international money transfers. Most of our Kenyan customers use our mobile app, demonstrating the strong demand for convenience when sending to friends and family,” said Ismail Ahmed, founder/CEO at WorldRemit.
He added, “With half a billion registered accounts worldwide, mobile money continues to transform lives by allowing people to access financial services for the first time. WorldRemit customers now send more than 65,000 transfers to the country every month from the WorldRemit app and website with over 90% going to M-PESA.”
WorldRemit’s rapidly increasing Kenyan customer base is as a result of its mobile money services. Kenyan diaspora conveniently send instant remittances from the apps (Android and iOS) or website directly to a mobile phone in Kenya at a low price, with the funds arriving in minutes.