Published On: Fri, Feb 28th, 2020

AWS partners with Kenya’s Safaricom on cloud and consulting services

Amazon Web Services has entered a partnership with Safaricom — Kenya’s largest telco, ISP and mobile remuneration provider — in a partnership that could spell foe between American cloud providers in Africa.

In a matter to TechCrunch, a East African company framed a arrangement as a “strategic agreement” whereby Safaricom will sell AWS services (primarily cloud) to a East Africa patron network.

Safaricom — whose products embody the famed M-Pesa mobile income product — will also turn a initial Advanced Consulting Partner for a AWS partner network in East Africa.

“The APN is…the module for technology…businesses who precedence AWS to build solutions and services for customers…and sell their AWS offerings by providing profitable business, technical, and selling support,” Safaricom said.

“We chose to partner with AWS since it offers business a broadest and deepest cloud platform…This agreement will concede us to accelerate a efforts to capacitate digital mutation in Kenya,” pronounced Safaricom CEO Michael Joseph.

“Safaricom will be means to offer AWS services to East-African customers, permitting businesses of all sizes to fast get started on AWS cloud,” a association matter continued.

For now, a information supposing by Safaricom is a bit meagre on a because and how of a partnership between a American association and East African mobile, financial and ISP provider.

TechCrunch has an exploration into Amazon and some additional questions acted to Safaricom, toward additional coverage.

An initial what-this-all-means take on a partnership points to an rising foe between American cloud use providers to scale in Africa by leveraging networks of internal partners.

The many apparent opposition to a AWS-Safaricom vital agreement is a Microsoft -Liquid Telecom collaboration. Since 2017, MS has partnered with a Southern African digital infrastructure association to grow Microsoft’s AWS aspirant product — Azure — and offer cloud services to a continent’s startups and determined businesses.

MS and Liquid Telecom have focused heavily on a continent’s immature tech companies. “We trust startups will be pivotal employers in Africa’s destiny economy. They’re also a destiny customers,” Liquid Telecom’s  Head of Innovation Partnerships Oswald Jumira told TechCrunch in 2018.

Liquid Telecom goes prolonged on Africa’s startups as destiny clients

Amazon hasn’t left entirely live nonetheless with e-commerce services in Africa, though it has aggressively positioned AWS and built a informal customer list that includes startups — such as fintech try Jumo — and vast organizations, such Absa and Standard Bank.

Partnering with Safaricom plugs AWS into a network of one East Africa’s many distinguished digital companies.

Safaricom, led essentially by a M-Pesa mobile income product, binds conspicuous prevalence in Kenya, Africa’s 6th largest economy. M-Pesa has 20.5 million customers across a network of 176,000 agents and generates around one-fourth ($531 million) of Safaricom’s ≈ $2.2 billion annual revenues (2018).

Compared to other players — such as Airtel  Money and Equitel Money — M-Pesa has 80% of Kenya’s mobile income representative network, 82% of a country’s active mobile-money subscribers and transfers 80% of Kenya’s mobile-money transactions, per a latest sector statistics.

A series of Safaricom’s clients (including those it provides payments and internet services to) are companies, SMEs and startups.

Extending AWS services to them will play out subsequent to a building of Microsoft’s $100 million Africa Development Center, with an bureau in Nairobi, announced final year.

Lessons from M-Pesa for Africa’s new VC-rich fintech startups

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