After serving Safaricom for nearly a decade, Ms Mwangi the director in charge of financial services is leaving the listed firm by end of this month. She’s well recognized for having launched Okoa Jahazi, M-Shwari and Lipa na M-Pesa services and has also steered M-Pesa and has seen it grow from a product that served 7.3 million subscribers in 2009 to over 15.8 million customers by 2015, increasing its revenues to hit sh32.6 billion by 2015.
In his memo to staff, Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore stated that
“I would like to announce the departure of Betty Mwangi, director – financial services, who leaves the company to pursue personal interests. Please join me in wishing Betty well as she transitions to the next phase in her career,”Ms Mwangi was once named among Africa’s 20 most influential women in technology by a Johannesburg-based online news firm.Ms Mwangi joined Safaricom in December 2007 as the head of new products division – comprising M-Pesa business and GSMA community projects, promoted to chief officer in charge of the division in October 2008, with the additional responsibility for Safaricom’s value added services such as ring-back service Skiza, bulk SMS solutions, short codes, directory services and news alerts.
In 2012, the techie was appointed general manager of financial services, the title later changed to director, when she took charge of M-Pesa operations. She presided over Safaricom’s mobile money division at a time when M-Pesa was on the growth curve and launched multiple products to deepen uptake of the service.
M-Pesa revenue doubled under Ms Mwangi’s watch to hit Sh32.63 billion in the period to March 2015, compared to Sh16.87 in March 2012. Doubling M-Pesa agents to 85,756 agents compared to 39,400 the previous period. M-Pesa is globally know to be Safaricom’s driver of growth.
For instance, Safaricom customers topping up their airtime through M-Pesa grew to 38% of total airtime sales in 2015 compared to a 22% in year 2011.
She will be succeeded by Brian Wamatu, currently the head of M-Pesa product development, in an acting capacity pending fresh recruitment to fill the position.